We brought Scarlet Checkers into the studio for our first ever bodypainted contortionist photo shoot! Scarlet is an extremely talented clown, contortionist and sideshow performer that has Ehlers-Danlos II: a condition that causes extreme hypermobility in her joints and ligaments. Through years of training she’s developed an amazing ability to bend and twist her body into seemingly impossible shapes. The contortionist’s ability to hold strenuous and complex poses is a great addition to avant-garde shoots and highly sought after in the world of bodypainting.
There are some pretty impressive photos of bodypainted contortionists that have been published throughout the years – some of the more popular shoots feature complex human sculptures and images of different bodies posed to look like animals. With Scarlet we strived to do something completely different from anything we’ve seen before. After careful planning we decided to use a unique approach to perspective in the compositions in tandem with the contortions to create a deeper, surreal set of photos.
Lighting our custom background to blend harmoniously with the different perspectives and compositions was an exciting task that allowed us to approach this shoot in a very nontraditional manner. The final set of photos features a highly improvised and time consuming collaboration that challenged everyone involved – from the photographer to the painter and, of course, the model.
Without further ado, we present to you our unique twist on the bodypainted contortionist!
Bodypainter: Matt Deifer
Photographer: Charles Shan Cerrone
Model: Scarlet Checkers
Contributing Writer: Dan Halma
Location: Bodypaint.Me and Cerrone Photo Studio, Philly, PA
Date: May 12, 2015