A Few Gestalta Related Notes

This blog has moved house...

You can now read it all over at http://gestalta.co.uk/blog


Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Ballet, crutches, and ropes…

Photos from a shoot with the talented Weronika Bachleda-Baca in Edinburgh earlier this year… experimenting with shapes using crutches, ropes and ballet pointe shoes.  I like these shots and I’d really like to experiment with this concept again at some point, as I felt a bit as though the time spent in this shoot (this was shot in about 15 mins if I remember rightly) was only just enough to begin to get my head around the concept of the different range of movement that using these props gave me… and it was a fascinating feeling in comparison to using pointe shoes alone.

via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1KnmLl5

Saturday, 25 July 2015

August Shibari Workshops…

Hello there,
I’m going to be teaching in London quite a bit this August, so if anyone’s interested in tuition – now’s the time!

Strappado & Self Suspension workshops

Firstly, I’m teaching 2 workshops organised for by Anatomie Studios on 8th and 9th August; my strappado workshop, which I’ve been teaching quite a bit in the last year, and a new self suspension workshop, which I’ll be teaching for the first time!
The tickets have only been on sale a couple of days, but they’re already almost sold out!  So hurry if you want to come… the links are below:
Strappado class on 8th August: http://ift.tt/1GOJFQl
Self suspension class on 9th August: http://ift.tt/1D1JMNx
There is also an option to buy one ticket covering both events!


I’ve also had a lot of requests about teaching beginners classes – and as a result I’ve decided to organise a small group workshop myself.

I will be running this as an all day workshop in London on Sunday 16th August, for the absolute bargain price of only £50!

The course plan that I use during my beginners workshops is below; if anyone has any questions, or would like to buy a ticket… just let me know on gestalta22@gmail.com!

Part 1.

This workshop is aimed at people who have no experience of shibari and aims to give a comprehensive overview of the basics, whilst also explaining the reasons and principles behind the things I’m teaching.  I aim to give you an introduction to some of the most fundamental knots and frictions used in shibari, and also to help you begin thinking about the importance of ‘flow’ when tying as I believe that working on this right from the beginning of your bondage journey will help you to progress later on.

I will explain some of the most common safety concerns within bondage, and how to communicate about this effectively with your partner.

For those that are interested, I’ll talk a little about the origins of shibari in Japan, and it’s development through to it’s present day form – and will explain a bit about the differences between types of rope and which to choose.

The ties in this course and ‘beginners 2′ are chosen both because it’s important to learn these ties in themselves, but also because they’re great tools for explaining the principles of bondage, rather than just learning to copy and follow a useless pattern.

The ties we’ll focus on are:
– single column tie: I cover three variations of this tie within the workshop, in order to help explain the principle, however we will only be focusing on tying one of them.
– ‘quick release’ tie
– double column tie
– creating ‘ladders’

Part 2.

I continue to work on the idea of ‘flow’ when tying and in addition I will explain how to choose a good tension to tie with.

– Brief refresh of the ties from ‘Beginners 1′: single / double column, quick release, ladders.
– Hojo wraps.
– Simplified Gote, or ‘box tie’.
– I will also demonstrate different ways of putting together elements covered during the parts of the beginners course to create other useful ties, such as the shinju (another form of munenawa), tying the hands behind the head or to the legs, the futomomo (leg tie) etc.
– time permitting: basic introduction to hip harnesses.

via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1GOJFQq

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

A new home for Schwelle 7…

For those of you that aren’t aware of it, Schwelle 7 is a community venue based in Berlin that hosts a mix of creative workshops, social events, and performances – it’s been one of the major centres in Europe for experimenting with a mix of arts, dance, eroticism, human interaction and… well, really anything else you can think of.

Schwelle is a place that I’ve enjoyed visiting many times over the last few years… it’s a fantastic space for personal growth; it’s supportive, challenging, educational and inspiring all in one go.  It’s a place where you can meet the whole world in one room, hosting a truly international community of visitors on a regular basis, whilst still managing to maintain a strong community of local people.

Anyone whose spent any time there will testify to the fact that it’s existence is invaluable… and magical!

Unfortunately it’s loosing it’s current space at the end of this year, and as a result is seeking funds to buy a new venue via an online crowd funding page, linked below, along with a video message from the founder of Schwelle 7.

Even if you’ve never been there before, if you believe that the last thing the world needs is to loose another truly unique art and community space, I would ask you to take a look – and if you are able to donate, do so (there are wonderful rewards for donations offered by members of Schwelle’s fantastic community)… and even if you’re not able to then please share this!

Thank you for reading!!

Link to the crowdfunding page: http://ift.tt/1DdjSkD

via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1CCZE8P

Saturday, 30 May 2015

A few Japan happenings…

So, I’ve been in Japan for a month already… and not really blogged about any of it, because that’s just the sort of person that I am and I’ve reached a level of self-acceptance that absolves me from the need to make excuses to myself for my spasmodic blogging behaviour.

However, suddenly finding myself with a day where I have absolutely nothing in my diary, 90% of my pressing emails have been replied to, and I’ve maxed out the number of cigarette breaks I can reasonably take in an hour already I thought that I’d give it a shot now, and I’m going to randomly accompany this post with some photos taken a couple of weeks ago, that are totally unrelated to the post in all ways, except for the fact that they happen to have been taken in Tokyo… in one of the zillion or so love hotels that England really should think about introducing, if only because they make insanely convenient shoot locations.

Shooting in Japan has been something of a challenge – it’s a really different environment from any of the other countries I’ve ever visited, and not just because of the language barrier.  For a start, it seems that nude modelling is not really a ‘thing’ here, and freelance modelling is even less of a ‘thing’.  On the whole, models are either doing fashion or porn – there’s not a whole lot of middle ground – and in both cases they mainly seem to be operating through agencies, or occasionally just through word of mouth… or at least, this is the general impression I’m getting from most of the photographers I’ve spoken to.  Of course, there are photographers here who are shooting art nudes, and some rather good ones at that – but finding a centralised online network to meet them has so far eluded me.  I’ve found a kind of MM equivalent, which won’t accept any nude photos, and a nude ‘modelling’ networking site, in which most of the girls have obscured half of their faces and occasionally write things like ‘service option’ in their profile notes.  However, despite all this, I’ve managed to shoot quite a lot, and I should hopefully have some super cool photos to share here at some point soon.

I’m guessing that, I’d be making a lot more progress with this if I could speak Japanese at a level beyond asking for coffee, and telling people I’m English – and I’ve been trying but it’s been kind of slow progress, at least in part because it’s far more interesting to teach the foreigner how to say ‘I smell like squid’ or to say funny things in Western Japanese dialects than to listen to her slowly stumble through largely uninteresting day to day phrases.  And, I appreciate that, in fact, I think even I’m finding it more amusing… but as of Monday I’ve found myself a real Japanese teacher and I’m hoping that helps a bit.  Although, finding a Japanese teacher was an amusing challenge in itself – there are a lot more networking sites for Japanese teachers than there are for models – but after signing up to a few I’m beginning to suspect that many of them are really just thinly disguised dating websites.  After signing up to one (which helpfully reminded me that I would meet a lot more people if I uploaded a picture of myself… hmm), I received a small flood of emails, all from men, and only 2 of those actually able to speak Japanese – the rest all helpfully offered to help me learn Arabic, which I hadn’t really expressed any interest in learning but… well, if anyone out there is interested I now have a long list of contacts I can send you!

Past shooting, and learning to speak bad Japanese, I’ve travelled around Tokyo, Matsusaka, Kyoto and Osaka, visited a lot of temples and shrines, spent an unreasonable amount of time in the bath (Japanese baths are the best thing ever… I could probably write a whole blog post just on the various baths I’ve been in), explored a number of rope bars, SM bars and happening bars, drank rather a lot, temporarily developed and then kicked a 30 a day smoking habit (by which I mean, I’ve managed to get myself back down to 10 again… result!), finally managed to catch up with one of my oldest friends after 4 or 5 years of no contact, and bumped into a various globe trotting friends who just happened to be in Japan at the same time as me.  I’ve also had Miumi-U with me for quite a bit of this trip, which is making us both feel like we never really left London.

Right now I’m at a point where half of me is so ready to go home, surround myself with familiar things and hide under a blanket for a while, and the other half of me doesn’t want to leave, because it’s actually kind of nice to be finding things ever so slightly difficult, and exhausting, and life in Europe is suddenly seeming way too easy…


via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1KDMdId

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Karolina Laskowska Lookbook…

Photos from the lookbook shoot for Karolina Laskowska.

Lingerie: Karolina Laskowska
Digital photography: Jeff Tuliniemie
Polaroids: Karolina Laskowska
Models: Gestalta and Maxine Anastasia
Hair and MUA: Jade Crean
Location: Sparklewren Showroom

via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1JXz4bH

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Cradle of Filth – Right Wing of the Garden Tryptich…

Still in Japan! But in Matsusaka now, I’ll be heading to Kyoto and Osaka soon. Super excited! But here’s another video (2 in a row)!

This is the new video for “Right Wing of the Garden Tryptich” the first single from Cradle of Filth’s new album, which I worked on (third one in a year… wheee!) :)

This was an interesting experience for me for a number of reasons. When the director, Sam Scott-Hunter, first contacted me, it was to work as a rigger or as a self suspension artist… but as we discussed the project, I realised that for reasons of practicality (not least that a lot of the ideas that popped into my head were a bit tough, and there was a definite possibility that many of the sequences would have to be repeated several times for the filming) that it would be a lot easier for me to model myself and get another rigger in. However, Sam and I still emailed at length about the project; I developed the concepts for the bondage myself, and we worked it into the video together… which was a process that I really enjoyed being a part of and gave me quite a lot of insight.
It was also interesting because Cradle of Filth were a band that I, and everyone else I knew growing up, had always been familiar with… so it was quite surreal to see Dani Filth, (still instantly recognisable even without all the make-up, walking into the studio). He’d been quite heavily involved in the look of the video himself, and was a really nice person to work with. We spent a bit of time talking about Japan also, which has become topical, because I’m here!


via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1FBAgl2

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Edinburgh – part 3…

Hello from Tokyo!

I’ve been here about 3 weeks now… and I was meant to have left this morning, but… I didn’t.  That’s another story for another day.

Today’s story is that I just received this video yesterday ^_^  It’s another part of the crazy 2 day shoot I did whilst teaching in Edinburgh in partnership with my beloved SkinnyRedHead, and a bunch of crazily awesome and talented people.

This video came about largely because we didn’t know when there would ever be another opportunity to tie up six (almost) naked men at the same time… the concept and feel of the video are very different from how I originally imagined it, but I absolutely love the results!

All credits are below the video!

Filmed and edited by Peter Bajor - http://ift.tt/1Bao9nO

Gestalta - www.gestalta.co.uk
SkinnyRedhead - www.skinny-art.com
Dominika Szymczyk

In ropes:
Byron Michaelides
Graham Farquhar - http://ift.tt/1FsIav3
Bejoy Sanjeev - http://ift.tt/1Bao7MR
Andrea Ropes
Qba Illume
Piotr Pyrchala

Music is used on a creative commons licence.
Track Third Level Encryption with Added Dubstep from TeknoAXE

via Gestalta http://ift.tt/1FsIbiE