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  • Robin Yong

Maleficent 黑魔女 沉睡の魔咒

Updated: Sep 17

I was surfing the net yesterday and saw Travel Photographer of the Year’s Facebook post and their recent activities, including the upcoming exhibition in London from September 29 to October 25. During their event, they will also be selling their books.

On their webpage they featured my image of a French Venetian model Gaëlle LC...

https://www.tpoty.com/new-books-on-the-way-from-tpoty-pre-order-now/


It says "Faces, People, Cultures: BEST SINGLE IMAGE"


I got a few requests and emails asking me about the story behind this image, so here we go...

This is one of my very iconic images done in 2017.


Maleficent, a character based on the evil fairy godmother character in Charles Perrault's fairy tale La Belle au bois Dormant (Sleeping Beauty), as well as the villainess who appears in the Brothers Grimm's retelling of the story, Little Briar Rose.

It is a classic theme at the Venice Carnevale as well, because Venice is a medieval city and during Carnevale many fairy tales come alive in what is easily the world's most beautiful festival. Gaëlle's version is supposed to be the Butterfly of Death, a true original on its own but more commonly referred to as being Maleficent due to the hype of the Disney movie at that time.


My teacher Florine Houee says her friend Gaëlle LC has a wonderful costume and we should do some pictures together. We were actually heading towards a cemetery near one of the churches. Passing thru the narrow alleys, we were walking in single file, with Gaëlle leading the way. (Even after spending 7 years at the Venice Carnevale, I can never find my way around town most times and it is often my European friends who lead the way.) I was second in tow and Gaëlle was walking far more ahead of the others so I called to her to slow down. As she turned around I took the opportunity to press the shutter...and here we go, a relatively unplanned shot...

Like most of my travel photos, this one is done using 100% natural lighting only, no flash, reflectors or artificial lighting. The camera used during this occasion is the Canon 5D Mark III with a 50mm fixed lens and my settings were f/5.0 ISO 1000.



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