Tag Archives: wedding

Grabmusik – Angel Costume

15 Dec

Grabmusik is a very early work by a young Mozart. It means “Funeral Music” in English, and tells the brief story of a newly departed soul being guided to heaven by an Angel.

I chose to illustrate this short piece early on when I was considering illustrating all of Mozarts works, but this is one of the only non-operatic pieces that got the photo treatment in the end.

The Angel 

The Angel wears a beautifully detailed white corset with numerous bridal style details, as well as an expensive and flowy silk chiffon chemise.

Grabmusik by Tyson Vick

Grabmusik by Tyson Vick (Models: Natasha, Dillan)

Once again, the details of the costume I made do not show up in the final image, which is something I learned to plan around late in my photo taking (I’ve been at this for ten years). However, the corset is made of white and ivory dupioni silk.

Vanessa Genieva Williams models my corset for Etsy.

Vanessa Genieva Williams models my corset for Etsy.

The corset features so many things I got on clearance in the bridal section. There are appliques, frogs, trim and lace. The white and ivory silks, which don’t really show up in these images, alternate, and the fabric over the bust is pleated.

Bridal Corset fully spread out.

Bridal Corset fully spread out.

The bridal trim at the top of the corset is beaded and has sequins which matches the appliques.

Bridal Corset front details.

Bridal Corset front details.

This was the third corset I ever made, and I was playing around with different ways to add detailing to an already existent structure. The corset itself is entirely a Rococo corset, with no alteration, underneath the fancy facade.

Close up of the details, pleating, frogs and applique.

Close up of the details, pleating, frogs and applique.

The boning in the corset is snap steel, and I believe it is actually too heavily boned to be comfortable. The bones have very little give, and so while it supports very well, if the model doesn’t fit exactly into it, it can press uncomfortably on the ribs which is an unwanted effect. The corset is too solidly put together to replace the boning, though, without lots of effort, and so I have a hard time deciding whether to sell this on Etsy or keep it because of all the work I put into it.

Vanessa Genieva Williams in the corset.

Vanessa Genieva Williams in the corset.

You’ll pardon these terrible pictures of this chemise. My camera was having an off day, and the light was low outside and the kitchen light must have also been on because they have a horrible green cast from one side and an awful cyan cast from the other. But, this is the Chemise.

Silk Chemise worn under the corset.

Silk Chemise worn under the corset.

Yikes. I don’t even want to show you this picture, so I’m sorry, but that’s the only one I have of the whole chemise. I need a better one before I try to sell it, because it is so soft and flowy and made from $90/yard fabric. I just know it can find a home if it’s marketed on my Etsy shop correctly.

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Ascanio in Alba – Venus

8 Dec

In the opera Ascanio in Alba, two people get married, and that’s the extent of the plot (which is spread over three hours), but any tension that may appear in the play occurs because the Goddess Venus (Venere) keeps the lovers superficially at bay! In the final photo, you can barely make out the dress worn by Venus (the one with the golden apple), but I’m going to show you what we made here, because otherwise no one will ever know!

Ascanio in Alba, Act 2 by Tyson Vick

Ascanio in Alba, Act 2 by Tyson Vick

Venus

This costume was the first costume ever made for this project, and since I began taking photos before I had even learned to sew, it was my mother who made this dress directly from a Vogue Pattern! The dress is made from a knit with glitter swirls, but it drapes beautifully and looks very Greco-Roman.

Elizabeth models the dress Venus wore in my photo.

Elizabeth models the dress Venus wore in my photo.

 

The pattern used was Vogue 2881, which I think looks great, and I can highly recommend for looks, but being a Vogue pattern there’s always something indistinct or hazy in the directions.

Vogue Pattern 2881

Vogue Pattern 2881

 

Elizabeth, who you’ll see dancing around in these pictures, was the original model for Venus in a separate photoshoot from the one that was used. This set was scrapped, because as I got better and costuming and photography, I decided to develop a new concept, and shoot in a different state, and that’s why the final photo features a different beautiful model as the Goddess Venus.

 

The dress is fun an flirty, split to the thigh and hangs off of one shoulder.

The dress is fun an flirty, split to the thigh and hangs off of one shoulder.

At the point when this dress was made in my costuming and photography career, I did not know how to buy Jewelry or where to find Jewelry. I’d never even looked for it. So, when I found a second-hand candle holder that looked large and Gaudy, I bought it, broke off the lid and glued some gems to it! It’s funny to look back and realize how little I knew about costuming, but the brooch still looks okay.

The brooch was made from a candle holder.

The brooch was made from a candle holder.

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Don Giovanni Costumes, Womenswear

6 Oct

Last time, we took a look at some of the menswear from my award-winning Don Giovanni photo. Today, I’m going to show you all of the gowns I made for the ladies!

Don Giovanni Act Two, by Tyson Vick

Don Giovanni Act Two, by Tyson Vick

As I mentioned in my last post, the image depicts Don Giovanni during his dinner party where the players are entertaining him. Each player is supposed to represent a character from the Commedia Dell’arte and each outfit is supposed to enhance the sex appeal of a certain body part (Bosom, Legs and Hips). Commedia Dell’arte is an art form, the basis of most comedy throughout History, and is formed of stock characters such as the fat buffoonish man (Harlequin) and his sexy wife (Columbina), who you will recognize in modern comedies such as The Simpsons (Homer/Marge), Family Guy (Peter/Lois) and many sitcoms. Each character is represent by a mask, so that no matter who plays Harlequin, the face is instantly recognizable. It’s a lot like a grassroots ad-campaign, getting people to know the characters in a time before television and advertising existed. There are numerous other characters in Commedia as well!

These costumes, while all based on something Historical, are meant to look more High-Fashion and theatrical. I wanted to do a Historical Dolce and Gabbana, essentially.

 

Guitar Player – Isabella

First, the sexy hips of Isabella, the Guitar Lady. Isabella is Commedia Dell’arte figure who is generally a very sassy, strong willed woman who finds love with the help of the other characters.

The model, Danica, wears the dress cheerfully.

The model, Danica, wears the dress cheerfully.

Her dress is based off a dress conceptualized by the illustrator Barbier in his image “Jour et Nuit”. I based my dress of of “jour” down there.

Barbier's illustration "Jour et Nuit" (Day and Night)

Barbier’s illustration “Jour et Nuit” (Day and Night)

I made the gown out of Silk Taffeta, and the bodice, which descends over the hips, is made up of random pintucks of the fabric.

The white, pintucked silk gown worn by the guitar playing lady in my photo.

The white, pintucked silk gown worn by the guitar playing lady in my photo.

The gown laces up the back, and the skirt is lined with tulle to give it some more shape.

The white silk gown from the front and the back.

The white silk gown from the front and the back.

A hoop is placed under the gown to make the hips suuuuuuper wide. Because I’m using a rococo hoop, which is worn at the waist, and the dress extends to the hips, it sort of forces the hoops to pop up through resistance. The neck ruff, which stood up so nicely in the arid climate of Montana, drooped despairingly when we got to the humidity of California, but, there it is.

A hoop is placed underneath and this lifts the hips out.

A hoop is placed underneath and this lifts the hips out.

The lady also wears this lovely vintage set of jewelry I purchased at the local antique market, and which I have listed for sale on Etsy. I am also selling the dress to clear out my closet.

rhinestoneset2

 

 

Masked Lady Plaer – Columbina

Next up is the player based off of Columbina. Columbina is a spunky servant girl who is either married to or in love with Harlequin.

I made her mask out of craft foam on the fly, because a leather one was too expensive to buy.

This mask was made from craft foam and rub-n-buffed to be silver.

This mask was made from craft foam and rub-n-buffed to be silver.

The dress, on the other hand, was a fun one to build! It is also the dress I got into an eternal loop trying to turn. When you sew a garment, you sew it back to front and then turn it through an opening and press the seams. Somehow, I managed to make this dress into a sort of tube, and tried to find the other side of the garment, fruitlessly, for around 20 minutes, before realizing it was impossible to turn. Hilarious sewing antics aside, the gown was made out of all of my white fabric scraps!

The center gown was based of of Harlequin and is made of patches of fabric.

The center gown was based of of Harlequin and is made of patches of fabric.

The gown is a skirt in the front, but has a small train in the back. I was trying to think of a High-Fashion take on a rococo gown, with the wide hips, but that showed off the legs. This is what I got:

The patch dress is a skirt in front but has a train in back.

The patch dress is a skirt in front but has a train in back.

I have a lot of white fabric scraps, and I sewed them together, randomly, to make fabric yardage. I did not use any new fabrics, only scraps!

You can see the patchwork fabrics in this detail.

You can see the patchwork fabrics in this detail.

This lady wears the Jewelry shown below. With this necklace I purchased a super cheap necklace at Walmart and added my own jewel findings to it in order to make it more gaudy.

UpcycledGemstoneNecklaceSet2

 

The Feathered Lady – La Ruffiana

The lady on the far right is based off of La Ruffiana, and if you look closely you will see she is holding an ugly mask. La Ruffiana is a Commedia character who is an ugly old woman, usually a pimp or lady of loose morals. I sort of decided, without telling any of the models, that this lady was the Madame of this troop of players, and I just sort of assumed that they all played instruments, did plays and were available for after-parties (if you know what I mean) for Don Giovanni. In the play, Donna Elvira denounces Don Giovanni for his late night sex parties. Anyway, that’s part of my inspiration for illustrating this scene as a high-fashion, Commedia Dell’arte mash-up.

don_giovanni_group03

The “madame” of the troupe of players on the right.

You will notice this costume displays bosoms prominently. This gown is based off a Renaissance cut and concept, with poofy sleeves and more of an A-Line then the Rococo’s huge hips.

don_giovanni_group01

This dress got stained during its travels, and so I recycled it into another gown for my illustration of “La Finta Semplice”. You can see that process here.

Finally, here is some of the big Jewelry worn by these ladies:

3RingGems2

I hope you’ve enjoyed the look at these Commedia inspired gowns I created for my Don Giovanni photo!

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