On Thursday morning I wake up and obviously I’m feeling stressed about going to the shoot, but not insanely stressed, just 6/10 maybe. It beats a day in the office, you know? So I make my way to the gym and I do a quick workout and then Scott turns up and he points at my stomach and he says – “What’s that? You used to be able to see your abs through that top, you can’t anymore”. And this is the last thing I want to hear to be honest so I freak out and hit him a bit.
You know when you see sitcoms with people doing modeling on TV and everyone keeps telling the model that they look “fabulous” and they’re doing a great job and all that, and it sounds fake and ridiculous? Well there’s a reason for that – it really is nerve wracking standing there in front of a camera / under the lights / stared at by a crew of people you don’t know having your picture taken. So basically everyone has to lie to you constantly and tell you that you look fucking amazing and you’re doing great (like standing there is a fantastic achievement) because otherwise you’ll look like a scared little animal and all the photos will be shit. So in conclusion before and during a shoot I want to be lied to thanks.
So we get there for 1130 and we have to hang around for an hour or so because they haven’t finished shooting the people before (some boyband that haven’t released anything yet). And as we wait outside in the garden my stress has reached 8.5/10 and I’m practically whimpering so I ask Scott “Do I look like a confident model to you” and he says “No, more like a gibbering wreck – almost hysterical”. And this statement is very accurate actually, so I don’t get mad.
Then eventually I have my make up done and the shoot begins and during the shoot the following things happen:
- Obviously I’m not wearing any clothes (why else would they want me there) and I’m holding a lampshade to protect my modesty and I’m asked to hold it “purposefully” so that I’ll look more “natural”. I’m trying to remember the last time I found myself in this situation to draw some inspiration from, but sadly I can’t recall when I last was butt-naked in front of 5 people holding a piece of furniture to cover my knob
- The lampshade is obviously covering too much so I’m later handed a baseball cap in replacement, which I’m doing my best to use equally well as a dignity-defending prop
- On my head various props alternate: a hood, a Prada deerstalker hat, another baseball cap
- I am asked specifically not to smile and the look we want is cocky (no pun intended), mean, aggressive, even snarly. My favourite look is “blank” so I try to work around that
- I refuse to turn sideways or even 45 degrees – I actually refuse to assume any other position apart from head on, because there are no props to cover my ass, and I can promise you that’s not going in a magazine any time soon
- Once my individual shoot comes to an end, I play the part of “naked office boy” in a different setting where a drag queen is sat naked on a photocopier and I have to look at his / her ass and pull a face of amazement. This would come naturally on a different occasion, but when I’m asked to act surprised I can only muster a wide open mouth and a blank look. If these pictures are used I will collect all the magazines around the UK and burn them
At the end of the day I do a short interview that will be used in the magazine, which will help me come across as not only a posey queen (from the pictures) but also a complete moron (sample Q&A: “Do you find yourself naked a lot”, “No, not really, I’m very modest. Unless I’m having my picture taken for the cover of a magazine, in which case I have no problem whatsoever getting my ass out”)
Finally, they asked me what I wanted to be credited as. Other people taking part in the feature are actors (from Hollyoaks), musicians (some boyband) or reality TV stars (from Shipwrecked). As I actually didn’t know why I was asked to do this anyway (having no media / showbiz credentials) I asked to be credited as a “writer” – well at least I’m writing an article for them in the following issue and err…I write this blog. And anyway, I would love to be a freelance writer and I get the idea that in the media you are what you claim to be, so there.
I have 7 songs by Ben Folds / Ben Folds Five and I have played them 40 times
I have 1 song by Bennet and I’ve played it 2 times
I have 7 songs by Benny Benassi and I’ve played them 110 times