Thursday, August 09, 2007

BERG Calendar Recap!

Ta-Dah!!!! We have officially finished the last shoot for The Big Easy Rollergirl Calendar. It’s been quite a “hair-spraying” experience. We have dealt with everything from killer geese, to temperamental weather, to faulty handcuffs. And during this rhapsodic journey, this humble rollergirl has learned a few new nuggets of wisdom.

1. It’s not the wisest idea to shoot outdoors in August. But forced to do so, talcum powder, sun block and water are your best friend.
2. Posture is everything. There is nothing more transforming than a straight back and thrown-back shoulders.
3. The more uncomfortable the pose, the better you look.
4. Tissue paper goes a long way.
5. If you are adjusting a rollergirl’s bra and fishnets in front of an open store window, cars will stop and drive backwards down a street.

First off, our photographer,Scott Stuntzdeserves a medal of honor for his work on the calendar. He gave up his weekends and his weeknights to shoot over 60 rollergirls (okay, so maybe it wasn’t THAT much of a sacrifice). He was patient, creative and thoughtful. And he put up with me snapping my fingers at him (a signal for shooting more pictures). All of the rollergirls have nothing but praise for Scott’s professionalism, work ethic and talent.

There have also been many individuals and local businesses that have been absolutely amazing. Fifi Mahony’s and Trashy Diva have been incredibly generous. They have loaned us wigs, corsets, costumes, jewelry and most importantly, advice. When I went in to Fifi Mahony’s to purchase my own wig, one of the owners, Marcy Hesseling, promptly sat me down in a chair and fussed over me non-stop in my quest for the perfect ‘do. Fifi and Trashy were extremely benevolent to me, and everyone in the league who has dealt with them has had exactly the same experience. Their kindness and generosity is what helps make this calendar so unique and fabulous.

The Audubon Zoo let us come not once, but twice to their establishment before they opened their doors to the public so we could shoot undisturbed. It was magical to walk in the zoo at 7:45 in the morning, and have a friendly elephant greet us with flapping ears and a wagging tail.

One of our shots at the zoo was a Cajun Christmas Theme. Our dear ref, Lionel Hurtz was dressed up as Santa Claus. Being Santa at the North Pole is one thing, but being Santa in July in New Orleans was another. He never complained, despite the fact we pushed him over a railing, tied him to a chair, and hog-tied him on the ground. Our shot ran a little bit long, and the zoo let us stay. But, it was a surprise to many families who turned the corner and walked into our shoot. I don’t envy the parents who had to explain to their children what Santa was doing tied up in the zoo in the middle of the summer surrounded by various women in skates… Ah, the price you pay for great art.

We shot the Storyville month (November 2008) at The Pharmacy Museum on 514 Chartres. They let us move antique furniture around, spread out on their antique bed (sans skates) and provided us with many one-of-a-kind props. Trashy Diva and Vandal O’Riley played a crucial hand in the costuming and jewelry, a result that is evident in the final photo. Blaze Scarr shot her burlesque picture in the courtyard, and even after slipping three different times due to the wet pavement (and perhaps my fanatical posing), she posed and primped on…. and produced a beautiful picture.

We did our 2007 Christmas shot at Vespa. Gail and Zak Materne, two of the owners, let us come in when their shop closed and literally transform their place of business. It was so much fun to shoot on their Vespa GTV 250, and just made me long for the day when I get my own. Fifi Mahony’s, once again, provided the remarkable wigs. F.N. Trouble, who had initially balked at wearing dress, suited up in one of Vandal O’Riley’s red satin dresses, and under the skilled hands of makeup artist Charlie McLoughlin, was transformed into a modern-day Marilyn Monroe. Tattoos and all! Trouble’s sex-bomb revolution is probably my favorite moment of the whole calendar shoot. Our new nickname for Trouble is “Nessie,” since like the Loch Ness monster, you wouldn’t believe it unless you had pictures. Thankfully, yes, we have pictures!

The City Park shot (March, 2008) we dealt with ants, ducks who couldn’t take direction, and curious raccoons. It was well worth it; the final shot ended in a playful romp in The Botanical Gardens’ fountain.

The ref/cop shot (October 2007) was disturbed by a nasty thunderstorm. At the last minute, Global Green opened their doors to us on a Sunday afternoon. And you thought they only saved the world; they also rescue glamorous rollergirls! The closed quarters worked out perfectly, and the interrogation scene ended up being the finest combination of camp and sex appeal.

Although each month had a theme and each shot was well thought out, inventiveness did occur. Crusty pulled the owner’s dog from LeMieux Gallery into the shot. MILF’s adorable baby became the perfect prop in the FEMA trailer shot. The powdered sugar fight at Café du Monde was delightful.

It was so inspiring to watch the rollergirls meticulously plan their shots. Everyone came together and helped out to make ALL of the calendar months perfect, not just their own. Many of the rollergirls wore other rollergirls’ dresses, held their props and were styled by their own teammates.

All of this hard work paid off. The Big Easy Rollergirls are proud to bring you our 2007-2008 Calendar. So enjoy these final, behind-the-scene shots… And order your calendar today!

Miss Animal Before

Miss Animal After!!!

The Glam Twins: Trouble "Nessie" and Animal

Cooney is in good hands with Charlie

Trouble twirls!

Ibeatya goes for a ride!

It takes many people to contain a ref

Bea offers some shade.

Trixie offers some last-minute dabbing

Panic remains calm...

Trix takes abuse meant for Panic

Sophie gets crazy with the cheese whiz!

Sophie gets a kick out of serving Shake

SmasHer is dazed AND confused

MILF = Goddess

Ruffit can handle anything

Sophie & Smasher, two of a kind

Buy BERG Calendar Now!

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