Q: You mentioned getting a wide range of shots for your portfolio, and away from FRONT you’ve made some really good choices of who to work with so far in your fledgling career. One of your first none FRONT shoots I saw was a “day of the dead” set you did. It looked like a lot of fun to be involved with, what do you remember from that job?
Abbie Mac: Ah that was such a fun day! Nicole Burke, the makeup artist, booked us in for a couple of hours at Pumpkin Studios in Manchester. She did the makeup at her place which took about an hour and we got to where the satnav told us the studio was to meet Ashleigh Simpson, the photographer. Pumpkin Studios has no sign or any trace that it exists on the outside so we ended up wandering around the middle of Manchester for a good 20 minutes getting a lot of strange looks from passers-by before we found the place! The shoot itself was good fun, we got to play with a smoke machine and some beautiful candelabras. It took forever to get the makeup off! I’m in love with the shots I got back from it, Ashleigh is a great photographer and Nicole’s makeup work was fabulous.
Q: It really is terrific work, and there’s a sense of drama about the images. With being so new to modelling, can I ask where you “learnt” how to do it? Or are you working from instinct a lot and learning from experience? Do you practice at all in your own time?
Abbie Mac: A lot of it is instinct, definitely more so in earlier shoots, but direction from photographers helps a lot. I do practice poses at home before shoots because what you think your body looks like and what it actually looks like can be frighteningly different and it’s always best to find that out in front of the mirror, not when you’re getting the images back! I’m learning a lot as I go and I feel like I’ve gotten better even in the few months I’ve been actively modelling, and I’m looking forward to learning more with every shoot I’m a part of
Q: Another aspect of your modelling that you’ve kind of explored is the fetish market. In particular I’m talking about a shot from a set you did with Nik Bryant where you’re holding a whip. The fetish community seems to love it judging by the responses. Is that an avenue you’d like to explore with your modelling work? You’ve mentioned latex before, have you got any specific styles or ideas you’d like to investigate?
Abbie Mac: It’s definitely something I’m interested in doing more of, I’ve actually got another shoot with Nik coming up where we’ll be doing more of that ilk. I’ve always been interested in the fetish side of things and it produces some beautiful and intriguing imagery. I’m a fan of light bondage and I’d absolutely love to get into latex modelling, some of the outfits I’ve been seeing recently are amazing and I’d love to squeeze into a few of them! I’m going to be going to Manchester Alt Fair at the end of the month so I’m hoping to pick up a few items for shoots while I’m there.
Q: Awesome, I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for those shoot developments. We come now to the latest set of pictures you’ve shared on your portfolio blog, that being the shoot you did with Paul Webster. I really liked this set, and think the myriad of different images you came out with was wonderful. There’s a sci-fi flavour to some, with the cold blues and even what you’re wearing in some instances. What was this shoot like for you, and who was in charge of the wardrobe for it? I only ask because I think the leggings/tights/suspenders (whatever they were) look stunning!
Abbie Mac: I absolutely LOVED my shoot with Paul, he was a really nice guy and extremely helpful with direction, he also pretty much saved my life when I nearly fell into a giant hole outside the warehouse! The colours in the images are so good, I was amazed when he sent me the copies back. I was mesmerised by his infra-red camera too, it gives some really interesting results. He asked me to bring a corset and something black, so we both organised the wardrobe I’d say - though he did mention I was a “lot more gothy in person!” Haha thank you - I love those tights! Yeah I’m bowled over by the images he sent back, I really enjoyed myself and I learned a lot from Paul. I can’t sing his praises highly enough.
Q: The infra-red camera gave you some magnificent flaming hair. Did it tempt you back to the colourful locks look at all?
Abbie Mac: I’d been toying with going auburn a few weeks earlier so yeah, I really want to now! But I’m sticking to my guns and I’m waiting until I have mermaid hair before I get the bleach out again. It’s… agony! Thanks Paul. Haha.
Q: What does the future hold for you in terms of shoots and projects Abbie? Where might we be able to see your work next?
Abbie Mac: This month I’m going to be shooting for Beneath The Eye’s summer campaign, it’s an up and coming clothing brand from Manchester. They’ve got a few items left at the moment here http://beneaththeeye.bigcartel.com/ and on Facebook they’re giving previews to the designs for the Summer collection http://www.facebook.com/Beneaththeeye - I can’t wait to start shooting, the designs are looking awesome and it’s something I haven’t done yet.
Q: Away from modelling, what is occupying your time at the moment? I know you’re a devoted gamer, so what’s got your thumbs a-twitching, and what have you been watching/listening to in your down time?
Abbie Mac: I’ve been playing a lot of Fallout: New Vegas lately and I’m still waiting to get my hands on Mass Effect 3 which I’ve been chomping at the bit for; the bank balance hasn’t allowed it yet though. I’ll be abandoning my Xbox for a while soon though because Diablo 3 is out this week so I’ll be back to the ole PC, I used to be obsessed with Diablo 2 so this is a long time coming! Other than that I’ve been listening to a lot of Teenage Bottlerocket which is spot on for the few sunny days we’ve been blessed with lately, their new album is out in the not too distant future so I’m very excited for that. I don’t watch a great deal of TV but I’ve been glued to Game of Thrones - I read all the books throughout my teens so it’s amazing seeing it come to life so well on screen. I’ve also been enjoying Preacher by Garth Ennis and Chew by John Layman, a couple of comics I could read 100 times over and not get bored of.
Q: Just before we end the interview with the questionnaire. I have to ask about your tortoise. You mentioned him in your FRONT interview. How’s he doing, and what’s his name? I’m guessing something like Yoda or Coopa Troopa… Close?
Abbie Mac: He is an awesome little dude! I’ve just re-landscaped his house and he’s currently digging a massive hole under a log and burying his strawberry in it. He’s called Ian! He’s a main feature on my instagram account, haha.
Q: I was way off! Right then Abbie, could we end with Bernard Pivot’s questionnaire?
What is your favourite word? Curvaceous.
What is your least favourite word? Regretfully.
What turns you on? Tattoos, dimples and stubble.
What turns you off? Fake tan, rosary beads, deep v neck t-shirts.
What sounds or noise do you love? Dirty punk rock.
What sound or noise do you hate? Children singing.
What is your favourite curse word? Shitwolf.
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I have an interview tomorrow to be a Crematorium Attendant, which would be awesome to get!
What profession would you not like to do? Sales. Again.
Finally, if heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? Here, you can take over now.
As you can hopefully tell from this piece, I had a lot of fun conducting the interview. Abbie was a pleasure to work with, and we went of on tangents throughout. I hope she won’t be too embarrassed by my exaltation during the writing of this article, it was a surprising experience talking to Abbie over the past few weeks, and I hope I have highlighted what a genuine and terrific personality she is. I wish her all the very best in her future endeavours, and am very excited with what she shared during the interview. Thanks as always to you all for reading, Abbie’s links are below:
Images in both parts of this piece were provided by Abbie and used with her consent.