I first met Dedeker Winston over four years ago, when I was just starting out as a photographer.
She was one of the first models I worked with and we clicked so well that we’ve been working together ever since. She is one of my go-to models, one of the best and most reliable I have.
She instinctively understands what I’m wanting from a shoot and she delivers every time. Of course, I adore my other models too, I have the best group of ladies and gents willing to pose for me, but this post is specifically about Dedeker.
Because, you see, Dedeker was chosen to be on Fox’s new reality show Utopia, which airs tonight. Their sites describes the show’s premise well, so I’ll let them explain it:
“Behold UTOPIA, a bold new series based on the hit Dutch program. Watch what happens as 14 pioneering Americans wave goodbye to the lives they’ve known, move to a remote location, and set out to create a society from scratch. They’ve got limited supplies, wildly diverse backgrounds, and zero bathrooms.
What could go wrong — besides everything?
The Utopians will make every decision about how they live and work. Will they choose democracy or dictatorship? Capitalism or socialism? Fidelity or free love? Which religion, if any, will prevail? Will they punish or forgive? Keep or share?
Are those chickens friends….or food? If not now, when?
It is all up to them.
This is not a game. There is no prize. This is UTOPIA: reality TV in its truest form.”
It will certainly be interesting to watch how the show evolves. And of course I’ll be watching to support my girl Dedeker 🙂
One of the unique qualities about the show is how long-running it’s intended to be; the contestants have to be willing to stay there for up to a year; perhaps even longer. While no one is guaranteed to stay that long, it’s a possibility. And I’ll admit, I was very sad to think about not having one of my favorite girls around to shoot spontaneously as the desire came up.
But I’m more interested in supporting Dedeker. This sounds like a really unique opportunity for her and she’ll definitely come out with the story of a lifetime to tell!
So in the spirit of supporting her and promoting her being on the show, I decided to put together a post with some of my favorite Dedeker images from the last four years of partnership!
All of the Utopia contestants have their own catch phrase/tagline for lack of a better term. Dedeker has been billed as the professionally-belly-dancing, polyamorous, nude model who has no fears of being naked – a trait I can personally attest to. I have many images of her, both clothed and unclothed, but for the purpose of this post, I’m going to celebrate more of her nude work.
She is equally skilled at both kinds of modeling, even when it involves wearing hand-made, noxious-smelling, tea-dyed dresses, heavy crowns of branches which have to be strapped to her body to support them, with decorative ribbons biting into her flesh because her photographer was too busy focusing on other details and she was too much of a pro to complain.
Dedeker has been instrumental in the building of my most-beloved photography series, DreamWorld (my own Utopia, if you will). She has portrayed countless characters, including dryads, oracles and deer-people to name a few.
So good luck to all the Utopians! But most of all to Dedeker 🙂
And De, let me know when you’re back so we can shoot again!!