Fire Mohawk.

Fire Mohawk.

To explain how this shot came together I have to go back a couple of weeks when I was planning to start this 365 project. I knew from the very beginning I couldn’t rely on inspiration. It’s silly to think that every morning a pink unicorn would slide down a rainbow straight to my bedroom and fart pixie dust and glitter full of inspiration my way (that would be pretty awesome though). My strategy has been planning ahead. I started with the resolutions since they were very fitting to the beginning of the year, then I went back to notes I’ve been saving on my phone for possible shots, little inspiration coming from the lyrics of a song, or for something I saw on the streets or whatever is happening in my life, and last I went to the files on my computer to see what pictures I could use for composites.

Some of the ideas I write down on my calendar are pretty specific and sometimes I just write a word so I can build the shoot around it. For today’s shot it was written “Fire”. As the days were approaching I started to think on what to shoot. Fire is not my element. I really respect fire. Let’s just say you will never find me playing with matches lol! But then I remembered that not long ago I met this awesome guy thAt LOVES fire and I happened to shoot a bunch of fire pictures with him. The guy is the awesomest Benjamin Von Wong. Laurent and I went to a breathing fire party he threw in one of his friends house in Orlando when he went to shoot his first Smugmug video. Laurent and I didn’t breath fire (we’re whimps) but we did take lots of pictures. So I went to check my files to see if there was something I could use and I found this picture that looked more like a texture. After staring at it for a while thinking what I could do with it, it came to me “A FIRE MOHAWK”!!!. Cool, but I’m not shaving my head!

I bought a bald cap on amazon and the fun started. I spent a big part of the morning getting all my hair ready. I have pretty long hair so taming all of it and rolling it around my head to be able to wear the cap wasn’t an easy task but I was pretty surprised on how easy was to put on and glue (yep, glue!) that thing to my skin. Then I went ahead to set my lights.  I knew the color palette I wanted to use. (Orange teal).  First I put an amber gel on my octabank, which was my fill light, then I added another strobe with a reflector with a grid and an orangie gel on it (this was my main light) I used the gel to kind of recreate the color of the fire. And last I set another strobe with a reflector, grid and teal gel to illuminate the background.

My biggest challenge today (besides taking off the bald cap and getting rid of the glue and latex on my hair) was getting the perspective and shape right on the mohawk. I tried almost every tool you could think of in Photoshop and realized I’m not as good at photoshop as I thought I was (I gotta fix that), the rest was piece of cake.

So here are some behind the scene shots I took with my phone, the original picture I used for the mohawk and the result.




this is how I look with no hair and makeup!


A little bit of fun while setting the lights.


My beautiful lights… and my son’s Fat Alberts and Hanger lol! (mom do not move my toys!)


Before adding the mohawk


Ok this wasmy pain in the butt today. It was super hard to manipulate the image so it fit my big bald head!

Fire Mohawk


And finally the shot! if you have any questions don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

1 Comment
  • Peter Schmidt
    Posted at 09:06h, 15 January Reply

    Gilmar, I am so impressed with (a) the creativity behind this shot, (b) the technical competence in all areas to pull it off, and (c) how you are the most beautiful bald person I’ve ever seen! So glad you’re sharing this series.

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