Hi all. I thought I'd blog a bit about the details from one of my favorite shoots this year. The editorial ran in MITH magazine a little while back. Our model was Chloe from Nous, an LA-based agency that has consistently amazing talent. Styling was done by Jordan Engel and hair and makeup was done by KC Witkamp. I've worked with both of them on previous shoots and they always do incredible work. #dreamteam
I'd been wanting to do a desert shoot for a while, but my general dislike for driving long distances (LA traffic!) kept me from driving out to the dunes. So I decided to create my own "desert" scene on the balcony of my apartment. It was definitely difficult to create a sense of wide open desert space in such a small area, but the challenge was exciting and I was really pleased with the overall outcome.
I used a mix of natural and studio light. In order to mimic the effect of late-day sunlight, I placed a light with a yellow gel behind the model and shot with a wide aperture to bring in the natural light and also blur the background, giving the impression of more space. I bought bags of sand from Lowes to spread out on the ground and my wonderful husband helped me gather some large branches. We looked like a couple of crazy people dragging these huge branches through our apartment complex. I also used some charcoal and lava rocks (Lowes again) to add texture to the scene later in the shoot. Oh and a fan! Always a fan. I'm a sucker for movement and it's always windy in the desert. All of these elements in front of a white backdrop completed the set. It was NOT fun to clean up but the images were worth it.
I did a bit of color work in post to make the set more believable; mainly, toning down the yellow studio light and also tinting the white backdrop to more closely resemble an actual skyline. There are things I would change given more space and time, but I love the final result and it was great to work with such an awesome team. Images below!