Now that the weather is getting a little warmer, the sun shining a little brighter, when my friend Erica invited me to take some fashion shots of her, I immediately suggested a beach theme. I pulled out some inspo shots to give her an idea for some of the elements I wanted to play with and she began pulling looks. On late Saturday afternoon we headed over to Golden Gardens and hiked in deep with a full sized suitcase full of outfit changes and gear. What I love the most about how these shots turned out is that we were able to achieve a spectrum of different types of fashion photography—commercial/catalog, young customer/millennial magazine, and high fashion/editorial.
Last week, my friend Rasheed Smiley invited me to take some photos of him as we wandered around Capitol Hill. Rasheed and I work together at Trilogi, an arts and music charitable events organization that raises funds to benefit marginalized communities. I first met Rasheed when he celebrated the release of his new album, Ballads and Genrebenders, at the venue I work for last November. Check him out if you like hip hop and r&b!
My friend Caela Bailey is a force to be reckoned with. I think I first met her when she was dancing with the Hill Rat Fly Girls, doing throwback dance routines on Tuesday nights at Havana—bringing back the 90s before bringing back the 90s was back in style. When I’m put in the position to briefly describe what she does, I’ll stammer with a momentary loss of words, because it’s hard to wrap a few words around her talents. “She’s a...performer,” I’ll say—which is accurate, but doesn’t quite capture it. She performs with burlesque troupes, but isn’t exactly a burlesque dancer—she’s more likely to be seen singing a sultry soul number between acts while the kitten clears the stage. She went viral a few years back when her and a gang of friends parodied “Blurred Lines” with a gender reversal of the controversial track. Her most recent successes have been the long-awaited release of her full-length record The Gospel of the Gutter Queen, the debut of “Belltown Crawl”—her music video and first single off the album—on the Stranger, and her autobiographical one-woman show, “Who In The World Are You?” at the Triple Door.
About a month ago, Caela invited me over for a photo shoot. She wanted to document the Capitol Hill home she’d been living in for the past 4.5 years as well as some of the more special garments she planned to off load as she prepared to cohabitate with her long-term girlfriend. I’d been marathoning Mad Men at the time, so when I walked in and Caela was in this exquisite gold muumuu, her hair in hot rollers, and her home filled with midcentury design, I knew exactly what to do.
Early this year, my friend Alexander Hatzialexiou (aka VAENS) invited me to shoot a series of studio photos to use as album art for tracks off his eponymous EP. We grabbed some time at Locket Space Studios in the Bemis Building in SoDo, invested in some brightly colored seamless backdrops, borrowed some lights from his dad, and got to work. Last night I was playing around with some alternate edits of a few of my favorites from this set, and I wanted to share. To see the originals, you'll just have to follow VAENS on Soundcloud, Facebook, and Instagram.
A few months ago, I had the pleasure of shooting some promotional photos for My Cartoon Heart for his new single, 'Ice Cold'. We met at Locket Studios in the Bemis Building in SoDo—my first time shooting in the space. I'm absolutely in love with the cold natural light the floor to ceiling windows provide. If you enjoy 'Ice Cold', My Cartoon Heart has a release show coming up for his new EP of the same name. Catch him with Mitchell Mirande and Dream Journal in Barboza February 22.
I haven't had the opportunity to shoot as much editorial lately, but luckily had a nice surge of new clients this month. Last week I met up with Kendoll, an emerging and promising producer and DJ, in the Red Room at the hidden bar behind By the Pound before we headed down to the International District to make some magic happen.
Last week I met up to shoot with hip hop artist Romaro Franceswa, whose 2016 record Mirror is one of the dopest releases out of Seattle in some time. He showed me some old photos of Jimi Hendrix he's a fan of and we rolled with it.
Things moved so quickly after I got back from Sasquatch at the Gorge this year, I never got around to posting my shots from this year. Some of them made it into Do206's recap of the fest, but many of them are just sitting in my desktop file folders, beginning to collect dust. With Capitol Hill Block Party just around the corner, and me looking forward to running around Pike St. capturing the action this year, I thought it would be a great time to share these shots and dive into the festival vibe.
Back in March I traveled to Los Angeles to visit some friends and while I was there, made time to squeeze in a few photo shoots. One of these shoots was with producer, DJ, co-founder of record label/artist collective, Main Course, and old friend of mine from Seattle, Astronomar. Mar (as he's known to his friends) and I spent one late morning cruising around the Fashion District in his van looking for eye-catching walls and good light. The neighborhood did not disappoint.
Last week I was invited to shoot the first annual Upstream Music Festival + Summit in Pioneer Square for emerging media production company, Fortitude. I had such an incredible time, photographing and dancing to live music, working with some new creatives, and enjoying time with friends. Below are some of my favorite shots from the fest, and for the full album, visit Fortitude's Upstream portfolio on their website.
I'm looking forward to shooting a lot more live music this summer throughout festival season. We've got a good one ahead of us, and this is only the beginning.
I took a trip down to LA the first week of this March where I had the pleasure to shoot with a number of amazing musicians and friends. This is Maiah Manser, whose new EP Second Skin has been getting a lot of really cool buzz, including a few tracks being used for video promos from VOGUE for the Met Gala featuring Katy Perry and Frank Ocean. Maiah will be at the coming Upstream Music Fest + Summit playing on Friday at 9PM on the Axis 2 stage.
Last spring, a few friends and I headed out to the most upper left point of upper left USA, Cape Flattery and near Shi Shi Beach on Neah Bay. We loaded our cars with a ton of snacks and some stunning costumes on loan from Jamie Von Stratton. My friend Brigitte lent her gorgeous mug and Annabelle Petry acted as both hair and makeup artist, while our friends Lukas and Estelle supplied jokes and helping hands.
Back in January, I rented a cabin in Packwood, WA with a group of friends and headed toward Mt. Rainier for some relaxation and photo fun. Come Friday, we packed up our gear, loaded into a couple cars and set off for a weekend off the grid. It was two and a half days of drinking in the hot tub, playing Uno in onesies, sledding in the snow and of course, taking photos.
I invited local burlesque dancer Audrey Rugburn as my model. She did all her own hair and makeup and I enlisted the help of Paul White, who works in merchandising for Lucky Vintage, to pull some pieces from the shop and style the shoot for us. Erika Frank lent a hand with some lighting assistance and my friends Mario and Sunny tagged along for moral support. It was such magical if not brief getaway.
I tried my hand at some family photos with my gorgeous friend, Hilary Paris, and her new baby boy, Ollie, this past December. It was so nice to reconnect with an old friend (fun fact: Hilary and I used to dance back up together for a local pop singer) and meet her adorable son.
One of my more recent projects has been getting involved with the local non-profit organization, Good Vibe Tribe. For the first campaign I worked on with them, we have been raising funds to help provide basic necessities to the people of Nickelsville, a local homeless encampment run and maintained by its residents and dedicated to helping others in need. On December 12th we will work with Mojito to put on a dinner at the encampment and are inviting hair stylists and barbers to come provide haircuts.
In an effort to inspire people to donate, Good Vibe Tribe's social media/marketing team and I headed over to Nickelsville so snap some portraits and ask them some simple questions in hopes of getting to know them better. It was kind of our little spin on "Humans of New York" and we called it "Citizens of Nickelsville." It was really lovely to meet these folks, who all had such big hearts, and the campaign certainly invigorated our fundraising efforts, with $1400 donated in that week alone.