The Real Venus by James McMillan.
Ten years ago I was sent off to a remote film studio somewhere in East London to shoot the film poster for Venus, the latest Miramax-Film Four production. It starred Peter O’Toole and Leslie Phillips who I would have liked to have met and added to the folio. However, the poster concept solely featured the unknown Jodie Whittaker. The image we wanted to produce was based on the Rokeby Venus painting by Velazquez, a nude, so we hired a model as a body-double to shoot in position. Jodie would join us later to shoot head shots that we would ‘comp’ in to the final image, thus avoiding her having to get naked. Everything went to plan and we got an excellent set of images to work to. Infact, when Jodie saw them she liked them so much she offered to do the shot herself! We cleared the set and reshot with Jodie as the real Venus so she ended up being the poster girl after all. She was a great help on the day and saved a lot of retouch so ‘thank you Jodie’ for being a star. It was great to produce something that was real in an ever increasing world of fakery. By the way the cherub was a blow up stuck on foam board and taped to a light stand!
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