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Then the Zombie Smiled by Mauricio González Álvarez.

November 21, 2014

My introduction to Elisanth’s modeling work was through a “people you may know” ad on Facebook. The tiny picture showed a ghostly woman emerging from the darkened waters of a bathtub, an arm reaching out and milky eyes staring at me. In her picture gallery the long haired apparition from the bathtub was now a zombie wearing a schoolgirl outfit and petted a cat waiting for lunch break; then there was no ghoul anymore, a red headed soldier was smoking a cigar, saluting me, a ninja, a film noir damsel, a revealing Louisian courtesan, a Mexican Catrina.

 

After being anesthetized by countless of self-proclaimed fetish, gothic, or alternative models, Elisanth reminded me that there are a few who decide not to contort in front of their smart phones in a bathroom, there are still a few who create. “I started modeling seriously with the redhead soldier shoot. It was a milestone for me and I don't like photos without stories, I try to avoid it, seeing the same expression in some photos. But sometimes it is required for "fashion" photos”

 

Her Fashion portfolio includes a rockabilly girl spinning her black dress seducing a hipster Lenin with a peek of her garter belt while she dances to the tunes of an old radio. “It had to be in the photos, that ‘60s hi-fi radio still works. We have a good amount of props but of course clothes and shoes are the closet eaters”

 

If you had to chose a favorite photoshoot, which has been the most difficult and fulfilling?

“One of the most difficult and stressing shoots was that bathtub shoot. As always, we tend to create something real, no digital effects, so it was what you see on the photos. The white milky eyes are of course contact lenses, the long hair and for the ink-like substance in the water we used some kind of medicine. It diluted within 10 seconds, leaving no traces at all so we had to act very fast. I had to stay underwater with eyes open, which was painful (this substance contained iodine) and rise from water with the expression and the right arm stretched and the head in position. We were extremely nervous while shooting. So it was a big surprise to see that the photos turned out better than we expected.

 

The photo with the hand reaching out to the camera was chosen as DailyDeviation on Deviant Art and has been very successful. Another one was levitation shoot on the train and the third one was levitation shoot in the forest, wearing an orange jumpsuit and a helmet floating by my side, it got less attention, but it was very difficult to make. And I like them.”

 

Another recent success is the Acuteness series.

I had the idea in my mind and it took some time to properly develop, I wanted to use black and white only to maximize the contrast with the scleras I’m wearing, but didn’t want to make it look like a dark or metal oriented. It was also challenging make-upwise, Inna did an excellent and beautiful job and Alex Zatsepin is a genius with lighting. We worked on it during Christmas and it was worth it.

 

Horror is the common theme developed by some character models, in Elisanth’s case she

finds more inspiration in sci-fi: "Some of my favorite activities are reading, travelling, walking, of course modeling, creating new character designs for photo shoots, editing photos, and sometimes drawing, and thankfully it’s my job too. I have a passion for literature. We had a strong reading tradition in the family, mostly sci-fi and mystic books. Jules Verne, Ray Bradbury and Russian writers are among my favorite authors. That’s why I try to include those elements in my photo shoots."

 

Do you have influence from other sources, like TV series and movies?

That would be Blade Runner, Alien (the first one) Repo The Genetic Opera and Chicago. And recent ones, Daybreakers and Dredd, I see a lot of tv series but I can’t miss Fringe, X-Files, Futurama. The Walking Dead of course, Game of Thrones and Supernatural.

 

I remember the homage you paid to Repo’s Blind Mag, you look excited and happy, for a dystopian futuristic diva.

I was! I love the character and I wanted to do my own version of her.

 

Like cosplay?

I don’t do cosplay. I get asked around about when will I do it, suggestions of characters but I don’t do it. I respect and admire people who do it, but I prefer creating and developing my own characters. I did Selene from Underworld as a client request, it was fun to make. I find more fulfillments in creation, like the zombie photos. I got sculpting wax and decided to try something new. It was part real S-Fx and part digital edition... very fun to make. One photo from that series was featured in a book about zombies!

 

Yes, I saw a lot in which you are smiling and having a good time.

We laugh a lot in photo shoots. A lot of things happen in the making and between takes. I mean, we take it seriously, there is a lot of planning and a lot of thinking before the shoot, I sometimes make sketches to give Alex and Inna an idea to develop and work over it, but once the shoot begins also the fun.

 

It was very pleasant surprise finding your work on the cover of a book here in México and another in a video featured in msn that spoke about the black eyed children. How does that make you feel?

I get many samples of use and manipulation of my photos in my inbox. I always enjoy

seeing them, sometimes in unexpected ways. People get inspired and create something

new, it is exciting. I also found a life size picture in a wall of a store abroad, it was a funny

coincidence.

 

And you recently reviewed the bandages picture, now in the form of a video, what made you take that decision and how do you feel with video work, is it a big change?

I decided to make a video based on many requests to show how to put on and off sclera lenses. After shooting one, I decided to go on. Video is a bigger challenge than photo; it requires even more attention to details. You have to keep everything in mind, to check if the details look good. We had to make more videos, as I didn't like bandage position on my head first of all. At the moment, this is more like sketch video, not a project, just a simple how-to footage. But it may evolve into something bigger.

 

Ever evolving, ever the changeling, Elisanth promises big surprises in the near future. She has built an effective team with Alex Zatsepin behind the camera and Inna Funfmarz doing the makeup. They work hard to create amazing visions of sexy and amazing creatures having fun and lots of laughs in the process.

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