A Black Swan

Things don’t always go to plan. This we know. Sometimes the result is misfortune. Sometimes things turn out better than we’d plan. And at other times the result is something we didn’t have in mind at all to begin with but potentially no less satisfying. Such is the story of photographer Timmothy Lee‘s take on Black Swan. But not the cinematic masterpiece from Darren Aronofsky as had originally caught his eye, but instead Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s Black Swan theory: that, amongst other things, all artistic accomplishments are ‘black swans’ – undirected and unpredicted. This is a photo shoot that, without intent, lives up to the idea. A photo shoot that was planned differently, for a different outcome, that bit by bit went wrong and in doing so went right.

black swan shoot

Click the thumbnails for full pictures:
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)
Rian by Timmothy Lee (NSFW)

Photo shoots do not come together easily – as experience has taught us many a time they never quite go to plan. A photo shoot is just as much a feat of coordination as it is a feat of art and talent. Lee’s Black Swan didn’t quite go to plan. One person’s family emergency and another’s prior commitments meant that what was planned to be a whole day’s photo shoot was anything but. Then there was the plan that the photo shoot should be outdoors, with the very essence of autumn captured. But a deluge of rain soon laid waste to such intents.

So a limited window of opportunity and the gracious offering of a location in which to photograph meant the results turned out quite different. Planned poses and locations gone, the photo shoot came down gut feelings of all the talent involved as to what would work.

The results, so different to what was planned, with all the elements that Taleb indicated were a part of a ‘black swan event’, can be seen by clicking on the thumbnails below.

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He was 5 when his teacher wrote on his report card “Daniel can’t sit still.” Taking it as a compliment, he’s been on the go ever since. Having flown over 590,000 kilometres in a single year (2012), he’s done much to push the boundaries of a fashioniser, always looking to fold one extra Tom Ford suit into his set of Samsonite cases and for one extra occasion to tie a tie for. As much an editor-at-large as he is Fashionising.com’s Editor-in-chief, when he's not travelling to all the fashion weeks his passports will allow him to, Daniel works on guiding this publication’s editorial and trend views. He is one of Fashionising.com’s co-founders.

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