Marina Ulyanova, a Moscow-based stylist collaborated with a photographer and filmmaker Anastacia Belyaeva, and a make-up artist Anastacia Bezhan on shooting Lena. The narrative is created in the beautiful old typed communal house with high bright ceilings and vintage decor. The main character is strong, unapologetic, liberated with the exquisite feminine vibe of sexuality and awareness of her body.
OLD CLOCK, WOODEN PIECES OF FURNITURE, PHOTOGRAPHS IN FRAMES DECORATED WITH LITTLE ANGELS, STATUES OF THE SAME THEMATIC ELEMENT THROW US BACK IN TIME. HUGE WINDOWS FILL THE ROOMS WITH LIGHT ADDING TO THE COLORS OF THE INTERIOR AND VINTAGE STYLE CLOTHES. LENA’S GAZE IS PIERCING, WARNING BUT INVITING TO EXPERIENCE THE STORY OF AN OLD FLAT AND LIVES ONCE OCCUPYING THE PLACE. PHOTOGRAPHED IN ST. PETERSBURG WITH SEVERAL SHOTS MADE ON A 15-YEARS-OLD FILM CAMERA THE STORY IS FILLED WITH THE DIFFERENT ERAS THE CITY WENT THROUGH.
Old photographs, paintings, figurines, clocks from the past decades add to the shoot a feeling of crashing someone else’s somewhat abandoned apartment that preserved its owner's character. Tell about this location, and the connection to the story told.
Our team wanted to create a feminine story with time going somewhere to the past, and for that purpose, we were looking for a communal flat in the heart of St. Petersburg. Why there? St. Petersburg is a city with royal history, and at the heart of it, people are still living in communal flats of tenement houses in which you may find 8 or even 10 rooms in one flat with old frescos, stucco on the ceilings, old fireplaces inlaid with pieces of gold and marble. For the shoot we were looking for a flat in a tenement house and managed to find one of those flats, in which of course one major overhaul was made but still, the main mood was saved.
Several mediums were used to photograph the editorial. Tell about the combination and the decision to use several cameras.
As we started making some kind of like-vintage-touch photo shoot we thought that it would be great to take shots on several cameras, one of those cameras (the film one) was a 15-years-old camera.
What was your favorite moment from this set?
The whole story was so great that it is really difficult to choose the favorite moment. Everything matched: location, model, weather (we were really lucky to find ourselves in sunny St. Petersburg).
The shoot is feminine, soft but yet extravagant, playing with boundaries, and suggested nudity. What were the guidelines for the atmosphere and a mood for the character? Also, items on set were mostly vintage and some even owned by the model. Tell about the process of styling, the choice of colors and fabrics.
Lena – our model – is a vintage lover. So we asked her to show us what she had. Some clothes were her mom's and rings – her grandmother's. It's really intimate when a person keeps such things, wearing them breathes new life in them and moreover when a person is happy to tell about those things to other people. Our stylist tried to keep those emotions and added clothes from vintage shop Eversale. All the colors were light because we had such a bright flat full of light, and Lena was a heart of it during the shooting. Some shots were extravagant because we wanted to explore all sides of femininity and we think that we managed to show that women are such beautiful creatures.