02 Oct London Couture Bridal Shoot
I’ve been working with London Couture, a vintage fashion clothing business, for a few months now. So far it’s been a great experience, and owner, Tina London, is largely responsible for the enjoyable experience. She’s a lady who doesn’t mess around, knows what she wants, and wants every aspect of her business done right. Our very similar work ethics makes us a good match for working professionals. I love her business for a number of reasons, but probably the most exciting is the fact that our opportunities in working together to create awesome imagery and marketing materials for London Couture are pretty much endless. The business has a lot of things going for it, and has a lot to offer as far as merchandise in the store. Over the last couple months I’ve been getting aquatinted with the business, and the style which they represent. It’s a tricky thing, being in-charge of the creative design for a business, their visual marketing person, but only knowing a business for a short period of time. Much like a tiny snowball starting at the top of the hill (where I started with LC), and gaining size and speed on it’s way down the hill, our relationship will grow and speed up giving us the ability to produce more and better work at time goes on. With a more intimate working knowledge of the business, my ideas for photo concepts are coming much more freely and often, not having to worry if the idea would be a good or bad fit for their style.
It’s that time of year to start pushing bridal marketing. All those brides looking to secure the biggest and best of everything to ensure their wedding is a great experience. LC has been attending bridal expos to help get the word out that they too provide bridal garb, but not just any kind of attire, really cool vintage dresses. A large part of Tina’s time is invested in literally traveling around to fashion hot spots in the world and hand-picking all of the one-of-a-kind designer clothing you see in the store. No steps are skipped through the entire process, as stylists are at the store to help you navigate, select, and fit clothing to best work with your particular shape. It’s definitely not an experience you get in many places, and it’s a completely unexpected surprise in downtown Tacoma. New found customers are often delighted to come across the store, always saying they can’t wait to get back into the store and shop more. Now that’s a business I want to work for. In my mind, the hard part is done, Tina has established and invested into a great store and business, now all I have to do is make sure that the photography can keep up with level of professionalism Tina has set. I’m not having to make anything look better than it really is, fib here or there, cause London Couture doesn’t need it.
So, as you can see in the photos, we had our first bridal concept shoot. Yes, we are dealing with vintage clothing, BUT we wanted it photographed with in today’s world. Mixing modern environment with vintage clothing creates a fun contrast, makes ya stop and look. This work would be submitted to bridal magazines, and the LAST thing we wanted was to blend in with the rest of the bridal ads who all project the same imagery we’ve all seen a million times. We wanted modern, clean, classy, different. We flirted with a bunch of ideas, I did a bunch of scouting in known locations, and we decided on the glass museum space. Lots of options, very clean/industrial/modern.
Not only are we showcasing brides, but bridesmaids and mother’s involved in the wedding. We worked main concepts with all 3 models, and then did closer work on just bride-focused photos. The key concept was the shot with the poles, however, by chance I stumbled upon a second location I wanted to give a whirl. When I pulled up and parked at the location, I looked out to my right window, and there was this space that immediately caught my eye. Concrete and huge metal girders, love it. Totally dumb luck I spotted this, and a true testament to that – I was standing right next to my car when I was photographing this look, didn’t even have to move it (and it also made packing up a lot easier with my car right there!). Love it when things just fall into place unexpectedly.
Early September left us with some favorable weather (even with our messed-up summer), and we had a great afternoon to shoot. I think the thing that makes these photos really pop is the sun’s light getting bounced around the glass poles. Even though the sun is just about to set over the Tacoma skyline, the last few minutes of sun were perfect. The best visual of this setup was also the biggest pain in the ass to work with, the poles. It was a dance of arranging subjects and lights while always trying to hide the sun behind a pole and swapping lenses.
This second location, just around the corner from the last, has this cool, calmness about it that I really love. You could shoot just about kind/type of subject between these two girders and you could say that it works. Brides? Why not. Much less complex of a shot than the first, not nearly as many factors working in the shot. Think of it like a cool down walk after running a really fast mile, a piece of cake in comparison.
I like a lot of the shots, but I’ll have to admit that the solo shots of the bride are my fav. Fun shoot, and SO MUCH more coming from London Couture.