Lakeshore Photo Shoot

What's up!?

Today's post is going behind the scenes of a cool on-location shoot I did last month. Model Alessandra with Factor Chosen Chicago reached out to me about putting together a test shoot with some swimwear involved.  Now, this was in early March so we were working around the weather.  After lots of planning, conflicting schedules, winter weather in April, and one very early Saturday morning call time, we were ready to shoot.  We got hair and makeup artist Vicki Valente on board along with stylist Charles Harris (also with Factor Chosen).  So, we pretty much had one KILLER team on this. Since we were shooting on location, I figured it easier to meet at my apartment for hair/makeup and prep.  We ended up shooting around Montrose Beach, which is one of my favorite locations for photography.

When discussing concepts, we were really at mercy of the weather.  Alessandra was looking for swimwear, but we planned for cooler weather as well.  When discussing with Charles about style, I sent him a few inspiration images and told him, if he wanted to, just pull everything from Zara (I've recently fallen in love with this store, I know I'm behind).  We ended up with a cool combination of Zara spring styles and some of H&M's Coachella Line (which as unpractical as most of the clothing is, it makes for some ah-mazing styling).  Can I just say Charles is awesome?!  He pulled 6 colorful funky outfits that all made for great photographs.  A lot of the things he pulled are versatile and allow the model to pose and move with the clothing, which as a photographer I LOVE.  He also hit it off with my boyfriend which was pretty funny, they talking about basketball while us girls chatted over hair and makeup details. ;)

Which brings us to makeup! Vicki Valente is this incredibly experienced, poised, makeup goddess in the body of an 18 year old, and she's a doll.  We really wanted glowy, fresh, beachy skin, so from my perspective, it doesn't look like a lot of makeup, but that's the point.  The "no-makeup makeup look," where a makeup artist creates flawless, clean skin that appears to be totally natural and you can't see the actual hour of work that goes into it, which she nailed.  My favorite part was how she styled Alessandra's long, dirty blonde locks.  She started with just curling them, but throughout each look, she would shake out the models hair more and add more product (and some water) so with each outfit the hair was a little bit more broken down.  One of my favorite things about working with Vicki, which I can tell she got from her mentor, Jessica Monzalvo, hehe, is her attention to detail.  Some HMU's check out once the model is behind the camera, and some focus more on the makeup and less on the hair.  But Vicki keeps it very detail oriented which makes for a much more polished final image.

We ended up shooting on a gorgeous day, but because we started so early (I believe we got to the beach around 8:30am) it was still a little chilly, and very windy. I had been looking forward to photographing Alessandra for a while, I'm really in love with her look.  She is so down to earth and fun to work with as well!  Our plan was to start with outfits with more skin coverage until it got a little warmer out. One of the crazy parts of being a model (this is from observation, not experience) is how last minute everything can be.  Models often book shoots super last minute and can be sent on castings at any moment.  Which is what happened to us half way through our looks.  Alessandra got a call that she was needed at a casting shortly so we had to cut our test shoot a little short.  However, I'm seriously in love with the images we got! =) Hope you do too!

-SK