For those of you who know me personally, you know that growing up I was the biggest tomboy even up to about 6 years ago. I was not good at styling or fashion; I was the real-life version of Andy from the devil wears Prada. However, the more and more time I spent working on bridal styling and weddings, the more I started to fall in love with bridal fashion and all that goes into it. About 2 years ago, Kunbi Odubogun, founder of Perfete, hired us to go to New York Bridal Fashion Week to represent Perfete and talk to designers and create some social media content with professional imagery. You can imagine my excitement and anxiousness since I felt like that was one place I would never belong. I also never imagined in my wildest dreams that on that very same day, I would meet a designer that would elevate our brand and transform me into an actual fashion photographer!
Domenica Stanziola of Domenica Domenica is such an angel, and the funny thing is, we weren’t even scheduled to meet with her at NYBFW. She was sharing a room with Julie Vino, and while we were waiting for our appointment with Julie, she was showing us her designs and getting to know each other.
Fast forward 2 years — she asked us to photograph the look book for her new collection, “Stellas Garden”! WHAT?!?! Guys, this is an upcoming fashion photographer’s dream! A look book is what designers show to potential buyers to market themselves as well as the imagery the buyers use to sell the gowns to their clients! When it became clear to me that adding fashion photography to one of my specialties, working on a designers’ look book was one of the goals. So you can imagine my excitement when I was called to complete this project for Domenica.
The icing on the cake was that I had the opportunity to choose the Hair and Makeup team for this editorial, so of course, I called upon 2 of our favorites, Whitney Burkhart of WB_Upstyles and Talitha Collado of Collado Cosmetic Lab. When it came time for the shoot, the 3 of us hopped on a plane from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and arrived in Savannah, Georgia, for the “Stellas Garden” Editorial.
We kicked off the multi-day event by having dinner at The Olde Pink House #theoldpinkhouse , which had the BEST SOUTHERN FOOD EVER!! Unfortunately, our model Savanna James wasn’t able to attend, due to her plane arriving late, but that didn’t affect us having the best time working the next day. The shoot lasted about 14 hours start to finish, it was the most exhausting day of my career, but by far the most rewarding! We shot at the coveted Perry Lane Hotel as well as the Hamilton Turner Inn, both just dripping with Southern Luxury and ended the day frolicking around Forsyth Park at sunset which the floral designs of Harvey Designs was the perfect addition to the Spanish moss hanging from the trees!
The key to success, for a shoot like this, is that everyone vibes off each other. It is ultimately a dance between the model, the photographer, and the cinematographers. Domenica’s brand team, LaConceptualist was there with us filming for her release video of the collection, and I’m so thankful they were there! It was such an honor to create with them and learn from them at the same time!
Thank you, Domenica for this opportunity, and I am so thankful for every opportunity you provide as well as your friendship! I’m so excited to see what the future holds for each of us! Hugs!