At your service!
One day Lady Aurora told me that she was making a maid uniform version of Blake Belladonna from the series RWBY and her friend Naiagu Cosplay was making a butler uniform version of Ruby from the same series.
It just so happened that I had done some location scouting at the Queen Anne Hotel in San Francisco earlier in the year for a different shoot that never came to be and I thought that the Victorian styling would be a perfect match for a maid and butler cosplay.
With a location set, I began to really refine the feeling that I wanted the photos to portray. I wanted to evoke a sense of sensuality without crossing over into the erotic. I also wanted to play to the strengths of each of the costumes. For Lady Aurora’s maid outfit, I really wanted to emphasize her legs and stockings. Conversely for Naiagu Cosplay’s butler outfit, I wanted to emphasize her vest and tie.
For posing inspiration, there were many sources, but the most influencing one was the visual style from the music video Wild by 9Muses.
Since the hotel room itself was pretty dark, I used two Paul C, Buff Einstein E640 flash units with parabolic reflectors as the main lighting source. Although I had brought both my Sony A7 and Leica M typ 240 cameras, I ended up only using the Leica M. I found that the dimness of the room was just enough for the EVF of the Sony A7 to be more of a hinderance than the rangefinder of the Leica M. The other reason, albeit smaller, was I didn’t want to keep swapping the flash trigger between cameras. I think in the future I should use two triggers.
As for lens selection, I had originally got a hold of a Summilux 50mm ASPH but the copy I received had such severe back focus that I found it unusable and returned it. So for the shoot I used my trusty Zeiss C Sonnar T 50mm lens and my C Summicron 40mm lens. In the end the majority of the shots were taken with the 40mm lens due to the cramped quarters of the room.
All in all I was very pleased with the photos and glad that the project was a success. I’d like to thank Lady Aurora and Naiagu Cosplay for helping make this shoot a success!