Getting the Shot: Memoirs of a Fashion Photo Shoot

March 9th, 2014 by Lacey Luce
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The 2014 Fashion Show Designers

The 2014 Fashion Show Designers

10 a.m.

OH: I just shoot whoever you put in front of me.

Ok before you get concerned that we’ve taken a dark turn on the fashion show blog, that sentence was uttered by the dauntless photographer Nick Fancher and we are at at the fashion photo shoot for the show lookbook.

It’s 10 a.m. on a Sunday, post daylight savings time (what a rude awakening), and I am sucking down coffee waiting for the shooting to begin. I’ve walked through hair (where I saw some amazing turquoise color going on) and make up (thank you sponsor Nurtur Salon!). I should probably confess here, I am a HUGE fan of Aveda products and Nurtur is an Aveda salon, so I’m a bit biased. But, I’m pretty sure I’m not being held up to journalistic standards of objectivity here.

Love her hair!

Love her hair!

The photo shoot is always a bustle of activity. Multiple stations with multiple things going on as we get magazine-quality images to showcase the collections of 22 designers in a look book and shoot 69 garments for their portfolios.

This year we apparently decided we needed an extra challenge. We’ve added a video station and we’ve invited the host committee to join us later this afternoon. We’ve also switched up locations, welcome to the third floor of the Loann Crane Center for Design.

So here’s something you may not realize:  This photo shoot is a major feat of directorial skill. We have 69 garments and 22 collections to shoot and since many models show clothes from more than one designer, this is not a linear process. On top of that, each look must go through as many as four photo/video stations. These logistics do not happen naturally, by osmosis, or even intuition. First, it takes a lot of pre-shoot prep to map out who will be photographed when (including scheduling when they will be in hair and makeup). Then there are several people on the ground physically making sure each group is where they need to be when they need to be.

Plenty of natural light in Crane.

Plenty of natural light in Crane.

I’m glad I just have to observe and blog. #lovemyjob.

Another random note for you: Since the jury show, just over a week ago, I’m seeing that many garments have been tweaked. These designers do not stop perfecting.

I love that our friends from Nurtur Salon stand by the shooting stations armed with combs, hair spray, and other necessities in case anything goes awry.

Inevitably, for me, there is a lull. Things start to settle into a rhythm. Models in full hair and make up sporting their designers’ creations step up to one of four shooting stations, they are directed to turn, lift a chin, move an arm, they are shot, and then they go on to the next station. One can only write so much about about this. And, it’s not like I can describe every piece in detail—spoilers, sweetie.

I’m not the only one who ends up in standby mode. I might have seen some interesting dance moves practiced as models waited their turn in front of the camera—this was especially impressive considering the models in question were in five-inch stilettos. Given how long the day is, these models deserve a big kudos for maintaing a fun and energetic attitude.

Yes we've got children's wear in the show this year.

Yes we’ve got children’s wear in the show this year.

4:30 p.m.

I’m back! Sorry, sometimes I get so caught up in watching everything around me that I forget that I actually have a job to do.

We did take a bit of a break in the middle of the day to let the models and designers eat (there’s probably a law or something that says we have to feed everyone at some point). The food break is particularly tricky for the models who are made up but still have garments to shoot. But Nurtur made sure everyone was freshened up and ready to go.

The host committee came, which added a new level of energy to the afternoon—we had an audience.

One of the great benefits of being at the photo shoot is that you get to check out the collections up close and personal. There was one collection in particular that I liked when I saw it at the jury show, but I LOVED it up close. The fabrics were so much richer in the well-lit Crane Center than I had realized.

At one point, while they were shooting a colorful beachy collection, I had this vivid vision of being somewhere warm and sandy sporting a drink with a little umbrella.  It’s amazing how fashion can transport you.

And, I think now I’m ready to be transported home. It’s been a long day for everyone, but we ended with an amazing amount of material for the lookbook, which will be given to all ticket holders, and a pre-show video. You can see the final results of this day if you have a ticket—DO you? … have a ticket, that is? Get them at www.ccad.edu/fashion/2014.

Starting March 17 we’ll be running solo features on each designer. You can follow all our antics via twitter #ccadfs.

Now, I don’t know about everyone else but I need a nap.

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The CCAD Fashion Show is an annual fundraising event that showcases the talent of graduating Columbus College of Art & Design Fashion Design Seniors. This popular event sells out every year and this blog is a portal through which to view the behind-the-scenes goings on.

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