Welcome to 'Where When How Wednesday'. In these weekly posts I'll be interviewing creatives about their journey into the creative world, their works, and what makes them tick. This week I'm interviewing Leanne Leawood, a talented model based in Birmingham, West Midlands.
Hi Leanne thank you for taking the time to answer some questions. We should probably start at the beginning...when and how did you come about getting into the world of modelling?
"Well.......Honestly, I grew up surrounded by all sorts of creativeness, from performing arts, growing up being on sets with my mum, being apart of performing and drama, SPFX Make-up, Artists, models of all levels, dancing, musical theater. I moved around a lot as a child with my Mum and guess you can say I have been lucky to see and be apart of all walks of life, It was never my 'intention' to become a model, although I always wanted to I never knew what part of the industry I wanted to be in or lack of confidence in how I would fit in where, so guess I gave up pursuing it, until one day I saw some beautiful Art Nude images and I got a Nude book by Peter Feierabend given to me and I was like 'wow...' yes this is it this is what I want to do, this is the artistic side I want to be a part off. Helps I also love being nude and nudity itself :)"
Most things, especially online, tend to fall into specific genres and/or gets described as being a specific style. The trouble with this is it's quite subjective, the style someone views something to be can often differ to the style the person creating it views it as. How would you describe the work you are putting out there?
"Erotic Imagery :) I accidentally slipped into this side of it, but honestly it came so easily and I was so comfortable doing it, I love being sensual, erotic, its like errrrrm...... 'telling half the story, keeping you in suspense, what happens next?' I am not a pornstar (as some people have said, if I was I would of 1. featured in a porn movie and 2. I am 100% sure there would be still images of me getting jiggy with another or myself - sorry) in fact that part of my life is obviously very private to me but hey! People will hate. I would also describe it as body confidence and being 'at one with your body' when I am infront of the camera its like a switch, I am someone different, I love my body, I am free with it and I think because of this my images or so I get told are naturally done, no faking, what you see is what you get, refreshing and unique (probably just being polite haha) and yes of course I am going to say Artistic :) Also people would say I am in the alternative catagory as I have very visible tattoos, I accept that photographers will say that of course but that is not my intention, I just love being coloured in hehe"
Photography, modelling and their related skills, as with most things, can have their share of problems. I personally have a particular problem with self confidence. This confidence issue can and has caused me issues with my photography. Do you find any aspects of modelling particularly challenging?
"Honestly? No! I started with a level head, open mind and able to take a) critism and b) rejection. I honestly truly believe that if you can't take that and you don't have control of your mind then you will struggle, especially in this industry as it can be very negative, but again ony if you let it. I have my own get-ups day to day within myself but for some reason I switch that off as soon as I am infront of the camera, I have no hold-ups and confidence."
In my series 'Foto Inspiration Friday' I share the people, images, places etc that I find give me inspiration. Who, or what, or where do you draw inspiration from?
"Ummmmm, I will try not to babble with this one, as there are so many, one women in particular Marilyn Monroe I grew up idiolising this woman, her views, self belief, her quotes and that body! I didn't aspire to be her, I admired her and she inspired me, 'give a girl the right pair of shoes and she will conquer the world' and I absolutely love shoes :) Personally also in every day life whether we admit to ourselves or each other I think that we all inspire each other one way or another, we all have an influence and impact on one another. My friends, time with them inspires me and what my next move will be and what I want and don't want, My mum, tattoo artists, photographers, dear old June at the supermarket, all, I walk away from educated, motivated and inspired. Practically anyone who as creative, ambition, passion, drive I seriously am in awe off."
Sometimes images hold a special significance to us. It can be the first image we ever made, it can be an image drawing attention to a cause close to our hearts, it can simply be an image of someone we love. Do you have an image or images that hold a special significance to you?
"Well this is a big yes..... I have alot of images but I can't release those as they are being published :) but the images you see above are very very significant to me as they are now available to buy on a T-Shirt - When I was growing up right until now I used to say 'one day I will be on a item of clothing, that would be awesome' then for these to be picked by the owner at House of Priory I was so excited... I actually shot these images for a publication but they didn't make it unfortunately! But the gutted feeling didnt last long when this happened :) this and having publications honestly I am proud to have achieved.... Don't just say it, do it, make what you want happen!"
Photoshoots can sometimes leave you open to scary or funny situations. What's the scariest or funniest situation you've found yourself in on a shoot?
"Scary and I will say this cause I honestly think it has to be out there, it happens.... when I started out although at an older age, that didn't matter you still are a little nieve and boy was I.... I fell for the scout call, had conversations, shared emails etc, met up with the guy who claimed he worked for a magazine, he even had a contract, everything seemed legit, then Bam, turned out he was not who he said he was and I don't want to think about what would happen if I didn't get away.... Always research, no matter who they say they are, always, always research, I am so strict now, I question everything and I am on top of my game..... If you smell a rat, it probably is a rat."
We've talked about your start, we've talked about your current work, let's quickly chat about the future. What have you got coming up this year, more of the same? any special projects? And in regards to a more long term plan, where are you hoping your creative journey will take you in the years to come?
"Well 2016 as certainly been a good year so far, In august I am performing at Sexhibtion honestly I nearly wet myself when they accepted my application, the line up for it is immense and I am performing alongside some very talented, well followed and known women. I am also due to be published in the June editions of Dark Parlour Magazine and Femme Rebelle Magazine. Also another exciting thing that is happening that is through-out the year and there after is, I have been blessed and asked to be apart of a beauty range in which my face will be apart off, all across the world, I am stoked about this too as it is quite a lifestyle and life changing thing to happen to me, the long term plan. I said things will happen and my time will be when I am 30 - I needed to go through lifes tests and guess what I am 30 this year and things are happening and I know will continue too :)"
When I speak to photographers I ask about their gear, it's only fair you get to geek out too...do you have any go to items you can't live without?
"The above picture says it all haha water, a bath, cleanliness! My toothbrush, perfume, Tan. And as sad as it sounds but society as changed of course my mobile phone, I work on that thing none stop, I capture moments on it, I video my work on it, if its not my phone its my laptop.... Unfortunately that as to be said realistically."
Now for the shameless self promotion part of the interview...where can people find you and your work?
Photographers in order;
Also T-shirts are available at;
Thank you so much :)"
I'd like to thank Leanne again for taking the time to answer a few questions for me, be sure to check out all of the links for more of her, and the other creatives works.