Tuesday, January 18, 2011

the process of inspiration

This past Saturday, I did a portrait session for my friend Brandie that I just loved!!! I absolutely adored the entire process. The shoot was done in my house, utilizing window light from the double french doors in our dining room, and a gray paper background that I have owned forever.

I would like to explain a little about what inspires me. See, Brandie is a huge fan of the show Gossip Girl. She and my friend Jen both convinced me that I needed some Chuck and Blair, and Serena and Dan or Serena and Nate or Serena and whoever {but mostly Chuck and Blair ;)}, and some Upper East Side Fashion {yes, with a capital F} in my life. It didn't take me long to become completely hooked. I started last year and went through all the seasons on disc, and now I am anxiously awaiting the return of new episodes! :)

When I saw the episode with Serena wearing this look for her mother's wedding, I just loved it...


And in another episode, when Serena attended The White Party at The Hamptons, her hairstyle was simply stunning...


I suppose I filed those looks away somewhere in the creative recesses of my brain. But it wasn't until I came across a vintage yellow dress with a cream lace overlay at a thrift store, that I became consciously inspired. I scooped up the dress, knowing full well that it would never fit me. Instead, I knew I would use it for a shoot. And I hung it on the door fame of my closet. It hung there quietly for months, silently challenging me to come up with a subject and theme for a shoot worthy of it's uniqueness.

I'm not sure exactly when it came to me, but one day, it all just fell into place. See, I happen to know that my beautiful blond friend Brandie has a ridiculous girl-crush on Serena, and from somewhere in my brain, up bubbled the images from Gossip Girl that I had filed away months ago.

So, I did a Google image search and started a folder of actual inspiration photos. Next, I had to make sure the tiny-waisted vintage dress would fit Brandie. So, I wrapped a strand of ribbon around the waist, cut it to length, and made Brandie "try it on" one night at LifeGroup. :) It fit. Whew.

Here's one of my very favorite shots we came up with on Saturday.

{I made the lace "headpiece" - just wide lace and a needle and thread. She's just holding it here, but it could easily be bobby-pinned into the hair. Oh, and Brnadie made her black bead necklace.}

Now, I had also saved a few images of Blake's/Serena's "everyday" hair...


And when Brandie showed up at my house for the shoot Saturday, she brought a few casual outfit options. So we also did a casual Serena look.


Honestly, I was completely thrilled with the entire shoot! I will probably do another post sometime featuring more images from it. These were just two of my initial favorites. But seriously, I am like a kid in a candy store when I am executing a shoot that has been stewing in my mind.

One last note about drawing inspiration from whatever random source.....When I am inspired by a look or even another photo shoot that I see {all photographers are!}, I never try to replicate it exactly. Instead, I use it to get my creative juices flowing, and then go from there.

Anyway, just thought it might be fun to share a little bit about my creative process, as opposed to just showing pretty pictures. Hope you all didn't find this post to be too boring. :)



  1. Absolutely love these images of Brandi! Great share!

  2. I love this post!! I think my favorite was the casual look..but I loved it all! It makes me want to get creative..


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