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sonyja rivera is a black model with a beautiful afro look that I contacted through model mayhem. I wanted to take photos of an ethnic model with some dramatic lighting. I had a makeup artist who was willing to work with me on the shoot.
sonyja is dark skinned, slim and just shy of 5’8” with an exotic look. she came with a whole assortment of clothing. I told her they were free to do any makeup look and I was gonna adjust the lighting accordingly. I had already taken a look at her profile online and seen the photos she had taken with some photographers in washington dc. I told her that she needed to shoot with someone who had a better understanding of lighting.
she turned out to have a great sense of style so, with the plain backdrop, I decided to do more editorial shots and focus on wardrobe, posing and mood. on the first set she wore wide-legged slacks with suspenders, a white bra and a hat. so we did a series of standing poses, sitting and a couple of headshots with and without the hat.
as far as makeup was concerned, it was just one look. it was more natural with the only accent being the dark shade of the lipstick. second set was with a bright red body-fitting mini dress and hair styled with an afro wig. some of the best snapshots of the session came out of that series. last she wore a black blouse and grey pencil skirt. I did a lot of variations on the lighting to capture different moods from bright to very dramatic. with her sense of style, she could be a great doing commercial modeling.