Some people just raise your game. When you find one, hang on to them for dear life.
I’m just wrapping up what I call the Crazy Season at work. It starts in July and does not let up until just before Christmas. 10-12 hour days most days. Conferences, workshops, tests, tours, and other events. Add to that the extra crush of new hires and people coming back on site after 3 years of working from home needing updated formal portraits. No lie, I photographed 121 portraits in five days at one point. All of them edited by me.
Which is not to say that I haven’t been doing my thing on the weekends from time to time. That’s my time to relax, unwind, and have some fun. It’s just that i haven’t been posting them in a timely manner. Well, now that I’m starting to get some free time, it’s time to start catching y’all up.
Back in late September, Tershia and I teamed up to do a sunrise fashion session in Virginia Beach’s Town Center. Tershia is one of those people that just simply rocks. She brings a strong game to our shoots and I do my best to capture it. Plus, I know she hates getting up in the early morning but she does it for me so I always want to make it worth her effort.
One of the things I tell her is that she could make a potato sack look good. The way way she holds and carries herself, the poses she hits, et cetera. She just makes anything look great. Well, during our pre-session phone consult, an idea popped up in my head totally out of the blue. Can we prove that? How can we prove that? I mentioned it to her and she just pounced on the idea.
With only a few days before the session and actual potato sacks in short supply, we needed to come up with a substitute. So we brainstormed. What was an everyday item that all of us have, that is cheap, easy to manipulate, and could easily be made into clothing. Then it hit me.
A quick search on the interwebs showed that a standard pillowcase had the dimensions we needed. All of them are 20 inches wide, which, cos there’s two sides, meant there was 40 inches of fabric to go around the widest part of a body. The length varied by the size of the bed they’re supposed to go on. A standard pillow is 26 inches long, a queen is 30, and a king is 36 inches long.
I believe she went with a king sized pillowcase. Of course they are cheap and come in an infinite array of colors, patterns, and materials. They are also easy to modify and accessorize. So we ended our chat with her on a mission.
She didn’t disappoint.
We kicked of fthe session with a pink outfit that just happened to match up with the colors of the sunrise. Pinks, reds, oranges, yellows always do. Soon, though, she pulled out her light green creation.
It’s amazing what a few, well placed, cuts and accessories can do. It was amazing. It fit in all the right places, was easy to move around in, and it worked. And the best part was that she proved, once and for all, that she could make a sack look great.
One of the lessons I give to aspiring fashion photography students is to hand them something simple, like a scarf, and asked them to utilize it in as many different ways as they could think of in five to 10 minutes of shooting. They came up with photos of it being used as a belt, a wrap, a toga, a shawl, a sling, et cetera.
Fashion, at times, isn’t about what you wear, it’s about how you wear it or make it your own. How else did we end up with stone washed, acid washed, charcoal washed, designer, boot cut, bell bottom, cut up, frayed, high rise, low rise, et cetera, jeans?
We finished our time together utilizing the various backdrops that Town Center provides to bring out different vibes. We got moody urban as well as a lush, verdant environment to play with.
As always, we got some amazing images. This time, however, I came away with the bonus of potentially exploring this fashion concept even further. That’s what the best photo sessions do – leave you with more ideas to try. Tershia always does that to me. She moves me forward and up to more creative images. She’s definitely a keeper.