My personal blog as a 'grown-up' Goth and Romantic living in the Highlands of Scotland. I write about the places I go, the things I see and my thoughts on life as a Goth and the subculture. Sometimes I write about music I like and sometimes I review things. This blog often includes architectural photography, graveyards and other images from the darker side of life.

The Gothic subculture is not just about imitating each other, it is a creative movement and subculture that grew out of post-punk and is based on seeing beauty in the dark places of the world, and looks back to the various ways throughout history in which people have confronted and explored the macabre, the dark and the taboo, and as such I'm going to post about more than the just the standards of the subculture (Tim Burton, Siouxsie Sioux and Anne Rice et al.) and look at things by people who might not consider themselves anything to do with the subculture, but have eyes for the dark places. Goth should not be limited by what is considered "goth", inspiration comes from all places, the key is to look with open eyes, listen carefully and think with an open mind..

Friday, 3 June 2016

Metal Meets Goth Near Loch An Eilein

As I mentioned last year, I am slowly embarking on a project of photographing members of the local Goth community. This set is one of two I took of my friend Joel at a ruined building on the shores of Loch an Eilein, at Rothiemurchus in Speyside. This is the first of three sets of photos that will have come from that day out - these are the ones I took on my little point-and-click camera as tests of different poses, etc. I also brought the Canon camera and took proper photographs on a proper camera, but I mislaid my memory card with those on. I also took photos of Loch an Eilein's ruined castle in the middle of it. I would love to visit that castle by boat... something I may have to try and arrange in the future with the castle's owner.

Joel is both a Goth and a Metalhead, and his outfit for the photoshoot was meant to reflect that, and I had a lot of fun doing his make-up; I don't often get to do make-up on men or in different styles. 

Photograph by HouseCat
I'm not quite sure what I was aiming for, specifically with the make-up; I went with something akin to the effect of wearing a half-mask with the shading drawn on, but it wasn't refined enough to exactly create this effect, plus the make-up over the eyes and bridge of the nose doesn't fit in with that theme. I guess in the end it was abstract geometry and shading. Either way, Joel seemed to like it, and I was quite happy with how it turned out. Crisp lines were achieved with using tape to mask. Using bandage/dressing tape seems to work best for this sort of thing. 

Photograph by HouseCat
I really like all of the textures in Joel's outfit. The complex strapped arm-piece is one really cool accessory, and I'm a little jealous of Joel because it looks pretty darn cool. I actually lent Joel a few of my spikes, even though he has heaps of his own, to balance it out with an eclectic selection of spikes on the other arm. I also lent him one of my spiked chokers, to layer with his own. I don't wear spikes half as much as I used to; I guess my fashion these days leans too much to the anachronistic to embrace the punkier aspects I used to love. Perhaps some of my spikier Goth friends will end up being a better home for bits of my collection. 

Photograph by HouseCat
Taking these photographs was a scramble through rough ground. I was wearing trousers, army boots and a rain-coat, and the weather wasn't warm. I'm surprised Joel wasn't complaining about it being chilly in that mesh shirt! The building (I am not sure if it was a boat-house or fishing lodge for the loch or what) is partly mounded around by rubble and earth, and I did climb up the mound for photographs, but they will probably be in the other set when I find the memory card for the better camera. 

Photograph by HouseCat
I think my photography skills have improved since ::this:: photoshoot I took of Ducky and Catastrophe Plague at Beauly priory (not that I'm not still pretty chuffed with the photos I took then). I am going to continue with my Gothic photography project, documenting visually the variety of Goths in the Highland scene. In the not-to-distant future there will be the second set of photographs of Joel taken with 'the good camera' and also the photographs of the island castle of the 'Wolf of Badenoch'. [Who needs Game of Thrones if you live in Scotland? We've even got a Wester Ross...]

Raven took this photo of me taking a photo.
I've been taking photographs of other things too - there's more graveyards, old churches and creepy things coming up, as per usual. I'm on summer break now, and trying to make up for how little I was posting while studying. University is more work than a full-time job; I've never been so busy in my life, not even when I was studying before. I'm also working on decorating the house and sorting the garden this summer, so I won't be posting every day, but updates will now be far more regular. 

10 comments:

  1. Your friend is sporting a very unique outfit, which you captured and feature in these photos quite well.

    Some of my Norwegian friends refer to themselves as metal goths and it seems that many from Scandinavia and perhaps your vicinity seem to identify that way. Here, the delineation between the two remains a bit more distinct even though lots of the area goths like metal. I seem to fall in line behind this reasoning as I prefer to call myself a romantic goth who listens to metal.

    Two days ago the only goth friend that I see around on any regular basis told me that she always thought of me as more vampire. Imagine how confused I'm becoming!

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    1. The Metal community is definitely bigger than the Goth community locally, and there's overlap. I think there are people who love Metal music, but also have an interest in the broader cultural aspects of Goth - there's certainly overlap between interests often held by Goths and interests often held by members of other darkly inclined subcultures, and there's definitely thematic overlap in the lyrical content and imagery of certain types of metal and Goth.

      When it comes to 'vampire' - I think there's the vampire fandom/subculture, there's people who are delusional and think they really are vampires, and there's people who like the vampire aesthetic. I'm primarily the latter, have been thoroughly jaded by my interactions with 'real vampire' types, and am also involved with what I see as the vampire-genre 'fandom' (or should that be fangdom?). I make a distinct line between in-character role-play an who I am, though, and most comments about me being a vampire are bad jokes (some are good jokes too :P).

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  2. I love this series. You've captured him really well!

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    1. Thank-you! There'll be more pictures of Joel in the near future.

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  3. Love the shots with the point and shoot looking forward to seeing what you did with the grown up kit.

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    1. I need to find where I put the SD card first! I don't even know how they've turned out myself, yet!

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  4. Great photos! Love the idea of the series!

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    1. Thank-you :) I've organised to meet up with another of the local Goths on Wednesday, so there will definitely be more in this series.

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  5. Really great job on the make-up! I love it!

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    1. Thank-you :) I don't often get to play around with make-up on a guy.

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