“Working with Marla Rutherford was a dream come true. As a performance artist, muse, and model, I had been a loyal and admiring fan of her work for years before she found me and made me her subject. Marla and her vision become an artistic adventure! Whether shooting in the middle of the desert, backstage at one of my shows, or randomly on the street, her lively and playful personality evoke an incredible energy on set, inspiring great results from her subjects. As you can clearly see by her tremendous body of work, her technique is no less than unique and perfectly, vibrantly executed. I can’t WAIT for the next shoot!” – Amber Ray
Was so excited to shoot Amber Ray’s visit to Denver for the Colorado Burlesque Festival at the Paramount Theatre! If you don’t know Amber Ray, she’s the epitome of a class, beautiful, artistic burlesque dancer with a NYC flare. I first photographed Amber in the CA desert back in 2007. On the shoot she zero help, but still managed to tie herself into a corset, pin her hair, throw on some lashes and became a Wonder Woman. She spun herself into 3 wardrobe changes all amidst the heat, wind and sand for 5 hours. This ended up being one of my favorite photos from that shoot. All done in camera shot with photo lights and a Canon 5D.
She pulled me backstage where the ladies were stretching and preparing for their performances. There wasn’t a slew of photographers backstage, a common problem that I now find, so it was nice to have the freedom to shoot what I wanted and being a female having the dancers be comfortable with me in their dressing room. It’s always a challenge to not be distracting to performers of any kind as they prep for their upcoming piece, especially when confined to a small space, but with burlesque dancers I find they are quite open and more then welcome to be shot behind the scenes.
Amber performed perfectly so of course we had to celebrate at her hotel after the show. We took more photos around the lobby where Amber suddenly did the splits right by the front desk, it was our way of greeting new guests I guess! We danced with the rest of the girls and guys from the show in a room rented out next to the lobby. Many of them had come in from New York and LA. Boas, eyelashes, rhinestones and wine were all strewn about in perfect chaotic fashion as we continued on until our goodbyes a little after midnight (or maybe it was much much later).