There are times when I question the use of that hashtag … #formalwearworninappropriately. I sometimes think better grammar might have it “formalwearworninaninappropriatemanner”, but that doesn’t quite jibe with the spirit of this series, sounding more like someone has simply loosened their tie or has their gown bunched into the back of their panty hose. Besides, it’s much too long. This series of images focuses on normal people doing normal things (or not) while wearing formal wear. People in everyday or unusual situations, turned out in gowns or tuxedos. I ask my friends to pose for me and, strangely enough, they do it. For the most part. I’ve had a few turn me down. A very few.


Three things matter to me in these photos: the gown (or tux), the lipstick, and the crazy shadows.

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I’m a huge fan of manipulated light. Wireless strobes are definitely good friends to me. Shadows are purposefully cast, revealing items that are outside of the frame yet are important to the story.

m4m_9018webFootwear is both unimportant and ALL important. You put someone in dress shoes and formal wear and people say, “Look at you, all dressed up!” You put someone in XtraTuffs and formal wear and the reaction changes. The scene changes. The boots change everything.



Things I’ve learned about gowns:

  • Gowns take up a lot of room.
  • Gowns, though they say “Dry Clean Only” can easily be washed in a machine.
  • Gowns are flammable (though some do simply melt).

As to that comment “Gowns take up a lot of room.” A plan is forming to rid myself of my accumulated obsession. I’m researching it as we speak.

Product safety research.


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