Tolkien in the woods

Watch the BTS video that Pratik and I put together :) 

When Ian reached to me with the concept of shooting a Tolkien inspired set for Faerie Magazine's upcoming Tolkien issue to say I was excited would be an understatement.

Living in Oxford, England, the same city that inspired Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, I've always felt an affinity with the world around me. Walking in the woods, under tall trees and winding branches that inspired the Ents, and the rolling landscape of green grass with little thatched roof cottages reminding me of the hobbit's Shire. A world of magic created in the world I walk in. This connection is something I wanted to bring to life for this series. 

After brainstorming ideas, Ian pulled the shoot together, it's something he loves to do and I can honestly say that he excels at it. He organised the styling and brought his skills to the hair and makeup. Ian recommended Vix Fielder who I believe made a beautiful Elven queen. 

We shot the series on a cool, crisp day, little blossoms surrounded our couple as they embraced in Spring's arms. The woods in Shotover Park was our backdrop. I'd chosen it for its variety of trees, I wanted to capture a sense of a journey through the change of natural scenery. 

It was a race against the time, the early setting sun casting the world in warm tones as we slipped towards magic hour. In the depths of the woods there was only the four of us. Myself, Pratik (my love assisting and capturing some behind the scenes footage), Ian, and Vix. Small teams are when I thrive. I can be myself, make mistakes, correct them, and try new things, chasing for that moment that takes my breath away. I came across several of them on this shoot :)

I hope you enjoy the art we created. Thank you Faerie Magazine for publishing this shoot as your front cover! 



Photographer - Bella Kotak
Models: Ian Hencher & Victoria (Vix) Fielder
Costumes: The Dark Angel Design Co
Silver Cape: The Purple Rowans Closet
Crowns: Freckles Fairy Chest
Retouching: Bella Kotak & Pratik Naik
Ears: Madhouse FX Studio



Bella Kotak

Bella Kotak is a fine art and fashion photographer currently based in Oxford & London, England. An art lover from a young age she always knew that she would work within the creative industry. Photography changed her life when she picked up a camera and began a 365 project. From that moment she was hooked by this medium that translates thoughts and imagination into tangible form and has since been featured in several magazines around the world.