Archive for February, 2010

February 22, 2010

New Page: Inspiration

I’ve added a new page to my blog!  It’s called “Inspiration” and is an ever-changing list of sites where one might find inspiration for shoots, wardrobe, and more!

Check it out: https://racheljay.wordpress.com/inspiration

February 22, 2010

My Everyday Style 14

It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these.  Sorry about that!  Things got really busy once I got back to work, despite a major event being finished.  I’m finally caught up with projects, so I can take a little time to share some of the way cute outfits I sported while on vacation 😉

Look 14: Flirty Casual
I wore this outfit out the first night I was in FL.  We went out to dinner to a place we’d never been before, and I wasn’t sure what kind of atmosphere it would be, so I went a little more nicer than basic jeans and a T casual, but kept it casual enough to not look too overdressed if it was a jeans and T kinda place (which it did end up being).  I did bring a cardigan with me in case I was cold, but it wasn’t part of the outfit itself, so I left it out in the itemizing below 😉
This is likely an outfit I’ll wear again, and possibly even shoot in.  It was way cute, and I regret not snapping a pic before leaving the condo!

The Look:

Get The Look: As usual, the items not available online aren’t linked.
Shoes: Cutesygirl; Jeans: Fragile (a TJMaxx find); Earrings: Claire’s; Bangles (3 sets, stacked): Forever21, Forever21 & Forever21; Black Tank: Target; Burnout Tank: Discovery Clothing

The above linked items were chosen by me with no pay or endorsement requests from the stores.

February 19, 2010

Chicago Modeling Agency Scam

Seems a couple modeling/talent agencies here in Chicago have been slapped with lawsuits by IL Attorney General Lisa Madigan.  Apparently Glamour Model Talent Inc. and Latte Model and Talent Agency LTD are deceiving their customers, by asking for a lot of money (some of it for stuff that shouldn’t be paid for in the first place) and failing to deliver.

EXCERPT:

Supermodel ambitions have led some folks to fork over lots of money to modeling agencies.

But Illinois Attorney Lisa Madigan says two Chicago modeling agencies – Glamour Model Talent Inc., and Latte Model and Talent agency LTD., – are deceiving their customers.

So she slapped each of them with lawsuits, Crain’s reports.

“These agencies have used exceedingly deceptive tactics to con consumers out of hard-earned cash without ever providing training that they promised to booking modeling jobs,” said Madigan in a press release.

Read the rest of the article here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/35458394/ns/local_news-chicago_il/

And here is some info on agencies, modeling conventions, and modeling school… heck, the whole site is a definite must read for new models:

February 17, 2010

Shoot for Meow Kiki

While I was on vacation in Florida, I had the opportunity to work with Heather of Meow Kiki Street Wear. All in all, it was an amazing shoot and the pics came out incredible!  But let’s not get ahead of ourselves 😉  Here’s the whole story of the shoot, because it was craziness, followed by pics.

The call time was 11A for hair and makeup, at Heather’s place. From there, the plan was for all of us to head to a park where we’d start shooting, followed by a second set at a location not too far from Heather’s.  We were all geared up to meet at Heather’s and take as few cars as possible to the locations.  Heather had found me, the MUA and the photographer on MM, and the photographer recommended she contact this girl who manages a few models, L.  I’m not sure how the hair stylist came into play, but I do believe thru L as well.  So that was the plan for the day 🙂

I arrived a tad early, which was my plan being that I wasn’t familiar with the area and was getting dropped off by mom and grandma.  Shortly after that, the MUA, Alejandro arrived and started working his magic on my face.  He was super sweet and did a phenomenal job on my face–a very different look from anything else I’ve done before!  While I was getting my makeup done, the manager and other models started arriving, followed eventually by the hairstylist.  I was first up for hair as well, so Nicole Y (the hair stylist) started working on me.  She also busted out an incredibly different look for me, thanks largely to a weave!

Alejandro and NY went to work on the other 2 models, Fio and Nicole M, transforming them as well as they did me.  It took awhile, but they worked fast.  Especially Alejandro, who had to be in Miami for a fashion show that evening (which was going to be nuts with the Super Bowl going on there!).

At this point, there was still no photographer! Which was kind of ok being that we were all still getting made up.  But then the manager got a YIM on her phone.  From the photographer.  Apparently, she’d driven all the way from Boca, paid $5 in tolls, spent 2 hours trying to find Heather’s place (which, you’ll note, the Chicagoan found fairly easily), tried to call both Heather and the manager like 5 times, got fed up, and went home.  Yup.  The photographer flaked. And she never bothered to apologize for it, and instead came across as pretty rude about the whole thing.

Now, neither Heather’s phone nor the L’s had rang during this time.  In fact, at one point, Heather and the manager had both tried to call her, and there was no answer, followed by the phone going straight to voicemail.  When she was called out, the photographer claimed her phone died.  Alright.  Fine.  Heather, at this point, said, “screw it, I’ll use my point and shoot and we’ll do fine without her”.  The manager relayed the message via YIM.

Upon hearing that, the photographer started trying to get back in the game, and went from being rather rude, to sucking up to Heather.  Who had none of it.  We decided we’d just deal with Heather’s P&S and make the best of it.

Alejandro and NY finished their work on Fio and a NM, and the 3 of us got dressed. Then, we gathered all our stuff and headed to location 2, nixing location 1 because it was getting so late and we didn’t want to lose light.  Location 2 was an empty, overgrown lot next to a Chik-Fil-A, which gave us a place to park, and a short walk to and from the cars, which made it easy to change in them.

So we got there and started shooting. There were a lot of great spots to take places in this lot, which worked out really well 🙂 It also suited the various looks pretty well too, which was great!  Each of us models had 3 looks Heather wanted us to get done, though there were a couple extra outfits in case we had time or something didn’t fit right.  Additionally, things were going really smoothly–Chik-Fil-A wasn’t complaining that we were there, there were no interruptions from passersby, and despite the wind, our hair and makeup was looking amazing!  The location was working out well.

And then this Random Guy (who’s name I don’t remember) walks out of Chik-Fil-A, DSLR in hand.  “Are you guys doing a photo shoot?” he asks.  We confirmed, and he asked if he could join in!  We were more than happy to have him join in, and gave him a short version of the photographer flaking.  Turns out, he was recently transplanted in FL from MI, and typically shot weddings.  He was at Chik-Fil-A with some friends, who were cool with him doing his own thing.  He ended up shooting about half of the outfits with us (Heather still shot with her P&S).

Funny how things work out like that, right? We all had a great time, exchanged cards and info (though I didn’t grab Random Guy’s info, unfortunately, but he has my card), and wrapped up the shoot before the sun went down.  I shot in 3 outfits, and I think that’s about what the other girls shot in, which means we got everything we needed.   Can’t beat that!

And, because I know you’ve been waiting for it, here are some of my favorite pics of me from the shoot… you can see others, including more from the specific outfits in the Meow Kiki shop, which is linked below.  The model with me in the 3rd shot is Fio 🙂

So there you have it. The story of a shoot that could have gone terribly wrong, but worked out amazingly in the end 🙂  Definitely a team that made the best of a crappy situation!  And had fun to boot!

I do also have a video of part of the shoot on my cell, thanks to Nicole Y.  I just gotta figure out how to get it off my cell, being that it’s 7.74MB and too big to message off there 😦  Soon, hopefully!

And the all important credits!

  • Designs by Heather of Meow Kiki, of course 🙂  Shop her collection here: Meow-Kiki Etsy Shop
  • Makeup by Alejandro of A2 Artistry: WebsiteMM
  • Hair by Nicole Y: MM
  • Photography and editing by Heather.  Haven’t gotten anything from Random Guy yet.

February 15, 2010

Comfort While Shooting

A model’s comfort during a shoot is essential to the shoot being a success.  Certainly there are some models who are able to control their face enough to not portray discomfort (often most useful during poses that are awkward and/or painful), but not everyone is capable of doing so. 

The bottom line, however, is that during a shoot, the model is responsible for maintining her comfort at a level that is satisfactory to her.  That means, that if a model is uncomfortable in any way during a shoot, she needs effectively communicate that to the photographer using actual words, not body language, expressions, sighs or other not-so-obvious displays.

If her shoes are pinching her feet, and she needs to take a break and sit for a minute, she can’t rely on the photographer to tell that from her body language.  She needs to say, “photographer, these shoes are killing my feet and I need to sit down for a sec.  Can we maybe bring in a chair I can pose on, or try some poses on the ground?”

If the model’s really thirsty, and will faint if she doesn’t have a drink of water soon, she needs to say, “photographer, I’m parched and really starting to feel it.  Why don’t we take this time to change the lights around for our second look while I get a drink and change?”  She can’t expect the photographer to know how thirsty she is, or that she may faint because of it.

If the photographer’s over-complementary directing style is making the model uncomfortable, she needs to say, “photographer, I appreciate your feedback, but the constant, over-enthusiastic complements are making me a bit uncomfortable.  Would you mind toning it down a bit?  I’d appreciate it.”  Some photographers think that models like being complemented, and in reality, some women are simply weirded out by frequent complements.

If, for whatever reason, the photographer doesn’t listen to the model and she continues to be uncomfortable, it’s up to her to say, “photographer, I’m not happy with how this is going, and I’m afraid it’s going to start showing in pictures, rendering them useless for both of us.  Either this has to change, or I’m going to have to pack up and leave.”  If the photographer doesn’t allow the model to sit, take a drink, or otherwise feel comfortable, then the model needs to hike up her britches and say, “You know what, this isn’t working for me anymore, and I need to leave” and then, leave.

Models, when shooting, you need to communicate with the photographer during the shoot, but especially if you’re not feeling well or uncomfortable at any point in time.  If you don’t, it’s your own fault for letting the situation continue past the point where you’re uncomfortable, and it will ultimately be your fault for useless images, blisters, passing out because of low blood sugar, or whatever else may happen.  Keep that in mind when shooting.

February 11, 2010

Studio/Location

This ‘game’ was posted in one of the forums I frequent, and I thought it was a really neat idea for coming up with shoot ideas (especially if you’re shooting stock stuff).  As I took it, the “studio” is a place where you can shoot with a lighting setup (or even a set you can create in a studio).  The “location” is one where you need to shoot with available light and/or on-camera flash, typically an actual location versus a set that can be easily designed in a studio.

Here are 20 ideas I came up with, using this concept of Studio/Location:

  1. Artist: Studio: Art Studio; Location: Painting Landscape at Sunset
  2. Basketball Player: Studio: Locker Room, Prepping for Game; Location: Playing Solo at a Neighborhood Court
  3. Bodybuilder: Studio: Lifting Weights at the Gym; Location: Showing off Muscles at the Beach
  4. Chef: Studio: Kitchen; Location: Delivering Special Meal to Table
  5. Child: Studio: Bored in Classroom; Location: Running Around the Playground
  6. Dancer: Studio: Dressing Room; Location: Performing On Stage
  7. Detective: Studio: Interrogation Room; Location: Gathering Evidence at a Crime Scene
  8. Environmental Activist: Studio: Painting Signs for Picketing; Location: Protesting the Demolition of Trees to Build a Parking Lot
  9. Fashion Photographer: Studio: Photography Studio; Location: Runway Show
  10. Generic “Big-Wig” Job: Studio: Office; Location: Golf Meeting
  11. Geologist: Studio: Analyzing Samples in Lab; Location: Gathering Samples Outside
  12. Horseback Rider: Studio: Prepping Horse in Stall; Location: Jumping Horse in Competition
  13. Interior Designer: Studio: Sketching at a Drafting Table; Location: Putting Finishing Touches on a Clients’ Home
  14. Makeup Artist: Studio: Trial Run With a Bride; Location: Working the Counter at a Department Store
  15. Politician: Studio: Speaking at Podium; Location: Working the Campaign Trail
  16. Psychiatrist: Studio: Working With Patient in Office; Location: Edge of a Building, Talking to Someone Who Wants to Jump
  17. Secretary: Studio: Filing Cabinet; Location: Getting Coffee at Starbucks
  18. Soccer Mom: Studio: Laundry Room, Washing Jerseys; Location: Cheering at the Game
  19. Teacher: Studio: Classroom; Location: Helping a Hurt Child During Recess
  20. Teenage Girl: Studio: Bedroom, Getting Ready for Date; Location: In Line at the Movies

So, what kind of Studio/Location ideas can you come up with? Grab a pencil and paper, and start jotting down ideas.  Who knows if your next shoot idea will come from it!

February 11, 2010

Huge Loss: Alexander McQueen

I would like to take a moment to express my sympathies to the family, friends and colleagues of Alexander McQueen, who has passed away as the result of suicide. His death is a huge loss to the fashion world (which even I know, despite not being very involved in that specific part of the modeling industry).  He will be greatly missed, and was truly an exceptional talent.

Here are some articles:

And the fashion show with the incredible shoes:

May he rest in peace, and may his loved ones soon be at peace despite their loss.

I know I promised updates while on vacation, but I wasn’t as connected as I would have liked, so I didn’t get to them.  Soon, I promise!

February 1, 2010

Updates

I’ve been swamped at work, and doubly so with my vacation coming up and needing to make sure I’m ahead on projects and whatnot.

That said, on vacation, I’ll be updating a lot, finishing up some drafts and posting some much-requested stuff.  So keep an eye out, starting towards the end of this week, for some great new stuff! 🙂

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