I got the opportunity to work with Douglas Kirkland recently. I met him through the art gallery I work at. I fell in love with him and his wife. They are such a beautiful couple so fun to be around and so talented.
You may know Douglas’s work from one of his most iconic shoots with Marilyn Monroe in the white sheets. He shot her when he was in his 20’s and Marilyn died just a few months later. He also shot Brigitte Bardot, Audrey Hepburn, Jack Nicholson, Michael Jackson and Leonardo DiCaprio among many many others. His work is in various museums including the National Portrait Gallery London and Australia.
Some of my favourite work of his was actually a personal project he turned into a book with his wife Francois Kirkland, called ‘When We Were Young’. Which I recommend checking out. I loved it because I’m a sucker for romance and a story. The pictures and poetry follow a couple in France in the 70s. Young, Free spirited and in love.
I was nervous when I was preparing for the shoot. I started to doubt myself because Douglas was such a huge photographer but I wasn’t going to let that ruin the experience.
Our shoot was so fun. I remember Douglas saying to me “Who do you want to be? You can be anyone you want today!” I love how encouraged the kid in me that wants to play and be a character fully and reveal what you want. I wondered if he said this to Marilyn.
I played Prince music and was dancing around the studio, crawling on the floor and ended up in Douglas and Francoise Kirkland’s bed with Douglas shooting over the top of me. Nothing dodgey though!!! There were 4 people helping there too 🙂
We were doing a salute to his Marilyn Monroe between the white sheets shots. He told me I remind him of “a male Marilyn Monroe”! What a charmer!!! 🙂
You can see from the behind the scenes shots we had loads of laughs. This shoot will be a special memory I will remember for the rest of my life.