Oh Instagram.  You are starting to know me a bit too well….

Two Swimming Mermaids in Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Tails
Why work with one Skeleton Mermaid…when you can have TWO Skeleton Mermaids swimming in your pool!

Dead Men Tell No Tales

One day this summer an ad for the Finfolk Skeleton Mermaid Tail, Dead Men Tell No Tales, popped up in my feed.  And I knew.  That tail was going into my pool!

I have been following Finfolk for a while and knew they were one of the leading makers of high quality Mermaid Tails.  You see.  Some of you may not be aware, but there is a whole world of Mermaids, Mermaiding, and Mermaid Tails.  And oh, what an amazing world it is!

Floating Mermaid in Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Tail

Girly Girls

I’ve never been a girly girl.  I don’t really wear makeup, my hair is generally in a messy bun, my nails are rarely even filed, much less painted…and by age six I declared that I would never wear PINK again. 

That declaration stuck for basically my entire childhood. And most of my young adult life.  Even now, I’ll wear dusty rose or fuchsia, but traditional girly bubblegum pink? Pretty much, no…

The World of Mermaiding

So how did I fall into the MERMAIDING world?  Oh, that one is easy. You see.  While I may not be a princess pink kind of girl, I AM all about finding your strength and living your dreams.  And that is exactly what Mermaiding is all about!  Mermaids are not some delicate flowers.  They are powerful, mysterious, awe inspiring. Mermaids are some of the strongest creatures in the Sea.

Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid

Creative Rabbit Hole

The chance to create a Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Photoshoot in my pool was *beyond* tempting!!  So. Down the Creative Rabbit Hole I went!

Like most of my Creative Projects, this one took on a life of its own of course!  Why shoot with one Skeleton Tail when you can shoot with two!?!

I reached out to Finfolk. When they loved my idea sketch we jumped in and began planning this crazy Halloween shoot – in August!

Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid pointing seductively
This Skeleton Mermaid Tail from Finfolk Productions is everything I had hoped it would be!

Styled Underwater

That’s the thing with these big Styled Shoots.  They take a LOT of planning.  Not just coordinating the shoot itself – with two models, two assistants, a videographer, a lifeguard, and a makeup artist.

And not just the props.  Like the Chandelier from Dilworth Lighting, Tails from Finfolk, Chair procured from some guy in the Harris Teeter parking lot off Facebook Marketplace, and Halloween decorations gathered from JoAnns Fabric, my attic, and a friend’s garage!

It is also the figuring the darn thing out.  How do you float a wrought iron chandelier?  Or light candles underwater?  How do you hang a backdrop across a 22’ wide freeform pool (most people use rectangle pools and hang the backdrops down the edge – but I have a 4’ rock wall around two thirds of my pool!). And how do you get a wooden chair to sink (confession – I know now – but I failed that day!)  HA! Hello haunted floating chair!!

Dead Men Tell No Tails Halloween Skeleton
And then there was bob…

Easier? Where is the fun in that?!?

I learn SO much with every single shoot.  My team and I learn and improve every time we get in the water. 

I started to type that it gets easier every shoot.  It should, right?  Um. Yeah. 

Except.  I have never been good at “easy”.

So. I learn one thing – then take on something else the next time.  Before one thing really ever becomes “easy” I have already taken three steps up the ladder and don’t even notice the easy part because I am already working on something that much harder! My poor team!  But they must love me – they have stuck around all season.  (And are already sending me ideas for next year.  So, I think they secretly like my cray cray 😉

Two Flipping Mermaids in Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Tails

Dead Men Tell No Tails

I must give much credit to the entire Team Salty on this one. Everyone did an amazing job!!

Our two mermaids absolutely rocked their first time Mermaiding. Lisa Lutz was not only an incredible model, but she was an incredible inspiration throughout the planning process, created a spectacular crown for the session, and blew me away doing her OWN makeup for the session! I can’t wait to work with you again Lisa!!

Kelly showed up in style once again! We have wanted to work together in the water again since our Underwater Roller Derby Session last summer, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity!

Dead Men Tell No Tails Halloween Skeleton Mermaid
Sometimes bob got camera shy.

Rainbow Tail?

Now I am definitely ready to work with another Finfolk Mermaid Tail, who wants to jump in with me in the spring? Maybe a rainbow tail??

What are your Mermaid Dreams…

RENEE STENGEL Photography | Charlotte Underwater and Portrait Photographer |
Swimming Mermaid in Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Tail
Underwater Skeleton Mermaid sinking against dark black backdrop
Dead Men Have No Tails… But Mermaids Do!
Dead Men Tell No Tails Halloween Skeleton Letterboard Underwater
Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid sinking and blowing bubbles
Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid
Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid blowing bubbles
Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid
And how cool is our floating underwater Chandelier?!? Dilworth Lighting definitely came through for me with this one!!
Dead Men Tell No Tails Halloween Skeleton
I love how creepy cool this Skeleton Mermaid Tail is!
Two Mermaids in Finfolk Halloween Skeleton Mermaid Tails
Skeleton Mermaid with Flower Crown
Skeleton Mermaid with Flower Crown
Skeleton Mermaid with Flower Crown
Dancer in Green and glitter sinking against dark black backdrop
Once we finished our Skeleton Mermaid Photos, Lisa and I played with some different dresses and fabrics from my Studio Closet. It was absolutely amazing! And still so creepy with our dark backdrop and her incredible makeup.
Dancer in Purple Chiffon sinking against dark black backdrop
High Fashion Underwater Portrait with bold color makeup
More of these High Fashion Underwater Photos to come later! But for now I had to share at least a few along with our Skeleton Mermaid Session!
Bob the gold skeleton loved to float around the pool during our Dead Men Tell No Tales Skeleton Mermaid Session for Finfolk Mermaids!
And of course, we can’t forget BOB! He was a fun part of the underwater set of course, but an even more hilarious part of the day. Until we weighted him down he just floated around the pool and kept photobombing our photos. He was so small we kept forgetting about him – until someone would suddenly realize he was in the background of a shot…
Bob the gold skeleton loved to float around the pool during our Dead Men Tell No Tales Skeleton Mermaid Session for Finfolk Mermaids!
Bob has become quite the mascot around here this Halloween!

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  1. Amanda

    October 26th, 2019 at 2:01 pm

    OMG! This is incredible! I love your work. Totally award worthy!!

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