1. Choose a spectacular location
Since Shavonne is a traveling photographer, who likes to capture in her works the life of the city, using a studio was not an option. We had only one day for location scouting and decided to shoot everything on the small streets of the Upper East Side. This neighborhood has a vibe of old school New York but very elegant and classy at the same time. It also reminds me of Europe so you cannot tell right away what the city it is exactly. Choosing an interesting environment is vital. Research your city and look around, don’t forget to take pictures while walking if you see something interesting. Avoid clichés such as “Central Park Bridge” unless it is a statement.
2. Choose the right trend to show
Since my inspiration for this shoot was early John Water’s movies and characters of Andy Warhol’s time I decided to show bright colors, prints, luxury fabrics and over accessorizing, which are the strong trends of upcoming Fall 2016. Remember that some trends are more spectacular than others. Sometimes a strong piece can “make the shot”. Even within one designer’s collection, you can find editorial and non-editorial pieces. Choose wisely. Huge volumes, bright colors, interesting prints, unusual cuts, high tech inspired pieces, avant-garde pieces, statement jewelry, headpieces, and veils usually look spectacular and help to pull off an edgy feeling.
3. Use hair and make-up as your tools
Some photographers underestimate the role of hair and make-up in the editorial shoot. You put all the responsibility on the model to create the right mood while leaving her with “natural” make-up and slightly styled “natural” hair. Why not use all the tools you have available? Currently wigs are in trend and I love to use them in my projects. For our shoot, I asked my hair stylist, Isaac, to create a short red wig with edgy bangs. Red is a very powerful color but tricky at the same time. In our case, the right shade was important since, if the wig had been too bright the model would not have looked elegant. That is why it was the right decision to find a shade reference beforehand. We used pictures of top model Karen Elson in her 1990’s times. For the make-up, we referred to a strong runway trend showing dark lips and naked eyes. We are currently waiting for our editorial, coming out late this summer, and I cannot wait to share it with you soon in my Instagram @juliaamorris.
Be sure to check out Julia Morris’ class on creative direction in NYC this summer.