Musings of an Aviation Photographer

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Showcase: Occasionally, you’ll shoot that one photo that really stands out above the rest.  Sometimes it can be totally unexpected, and you don’t even realize it until you see the photo on your computer.  Other times, you can see the photo falling into place allowing you to click the shutter button at the exact moment that you know you’ve caught your own personal masterpiece.  Ever so often I’m going to showcase some of what I personally think are interesting and pretty cool photos I’ve taken, with a bit of info behind the photo and how it all came into place.


Slave Leia (Christy Marie) using Force Lightning against two Stormtroopers

Those of you who are fans of my facebook photography page may recognize this photo as one of my ‘Favorite Images over the Years’ shots. Shooting at various conventions, I’m often presented with some wonderful photo ops.  From the strange and bizarre to the really funny and neat.  I always keep an eye out for those photos that really stand out and are unique, and often times out of place.  Having a Boba Fett pretend to be attacked by zombies, for example, makes for a unique photo.  With the abundance of models, be it from Star Wars, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, or whatever your fancy, there’s bound to be some pretty fun photos to be taken.  Thankfully in Southern California, there’s been a good amount of conventions ranging from Comic Con to Star Wars Celebrations.  Before I get to the photo that’s going to be showcased, let me back up a little and give some background on the person in the photo.

Everyone loves Slave Leia.  Wait, let me rephrase that… every guy loves Slave Leia.  Gals are hit and miss when it comes to the gold bikini clad princess. Christy at Comic Con 2007Voted a few years ago as the #1 male fantasy character, Slave Leia has become a staple image of conventions in the last few years due to an explosion of Slave Leia costumers.  What used to be a rare sight now you can’t turn a corner at a convention without seeing a Slave Leia.  It’s grown and grown with each convention every year so much so that the occasional sight of one Slave Leia has now become groups of Slave Leias walking around in these outfits which are only a little more covered than your standard bikini.  But while more and more women put on the skimpy outfit and brave what was originally something most gals were far to afraid to even think about doing, there’s one Slave Leia in particular that started it all.  She’s the legend of the Slave Leias, the one that everyone in the Star Wars community knows by name and talks about.  She braved the amount of skin needing to be shown and the gawking of men at conventions to start something that has exponentially grown. Aside from being a beautiful gal already, she was able to wear the famous metal bikini and pull it off not only well, but stunningly.  Aside from Carrie Fisher herself in Return of the Jedi, I’d call this celebrity in the Star Wars fan world the original Slave Leia.  Her name is Christy Marie.

I had the honor and pleasure of getting to know Christy several years ago at Comic Con.  Christy at Comic Con 2007I remember the first day we walked around the convention chatting, she was stopped ever 5 feet by someone wanting a photo, and that one person would instantly turn into a massive group of people which would all be yelling for her attention, just like a celebrity at a red carpet premiere with flashes going off in every direction. Eventually security or convention staff member would have to come by and ask Christy to keep moving as the amount of people trying to snap shots of her would block the isle ways.  Even when she would have her robe on and having lunch, people will still recognize her and ask her for a photo. With a smile, Christy would always be happy to pop off the rope for a second so they could get the shot.  Christy in Slave Leia became not just a sight to see, but an anticipated event by many people at conventions, often asking Christy when she’d be in the Slave Leia costume before even saying hello.   She truly is the one and only Slave Leia that stands out, and will undoubtedly always keep that title even when she gives up doing that costume.  Over the years Christy and I became really close friends, and I’ve gotten to know her far beyond the Slave Leia costume and how and incredibly kind person she is. We’ve since always have some photo fun at conventions when she’d put on the Slave Leia costume.  Time and time again, she’s proved she’s THE Slave Leia of all Slave Leias that has or will ever be.  Keep an eye on this blog for hopefully some new photoshoots with Christy coming up in the near future.

Now to the showcased photo! In May of 2007, LucasFilm put on their 4th Star Wars Celebration convention (known as Celebration IV).  This time, it was held on the west coast at the Los Angeles convention center. Celebration IV Slave Leia (Christy) being filmed in the exhibit hall Naturally, Star Wars fans from around the United States and the world traveled to the convention that lasted exhausting days.  At most conventions of this type, you have your exhibit hall which showcases new products and vendors sell every type of merchandise possible and then you have the rooms dedicated to seminars and panels.  For Celebration IV, the exhibit hall was rather large with all sorts of Star Wars vendors showcasing their new items.  One of these vendors was LucasArts, which is the game division of LucasFilm specializing in Star Wars video games for gaming systems and computers.  Naturally, vendors like LucasArts have large booths with a lot of really visually stunning graphics surrounding the outside walls of the booth.  For Celebration IV, they were showcasing on these walls the new Star Wars Force Unleashed video games series.

Christy and I had been walking around the exhibit hall looking at all the various things for sale and stopping every 5 feet or so for someone to get a photo of her in her Slave Leia bikini.  Slave Leia (Christy Marie) using Force Lightning against two StormtroopersWe turned the corner over at the LucasArts booth, and I saw this rather ‘shocking’ (I know, bad pun) wall art.  It was there so people could walk up and take a photo looking like they were ‘force lightning’ against some helpless Stormtroopers.  I knew right away that I had to get a shot of that with Christy, it was too classic to pass up.  The shot turned out so much better than I had thought, mostly I believe because of the color compliments and contrast between her warm colored skin tones and the walls cold blue tone.  Not to mention the serious look on Christy’s face.  All in all it’s a pretty funny shot, and one of my favorite photos with Christy at a convention.

Be careful when next time at a convention you ask a Slave Leia for a photo, you never know when they might really possess Force Lightning…

For more in this series, click here!

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