I've been wanting to blog this shoot for a while now and I'm finally caught up on editing it! This was something I dreamed up a while go. I wanted to build up my photography and styling portfolio with some photos that I could have much more control over style-and-location-wise. I knew I wanted to photograph children (because I feel like photographing them is a strength of mine, and honestly, they are much easier and fun to photograph than adults because they are so natural and not so self-conscious yet) and I wanted to style them in vintage clothing. After doing some searching on Etsy, I found these four dresses that seemed to be made for each other. They all are pastel colored and have a sheer element to them which I loved. They look to be from the 60 and 70s eras.
Once I found my dresses, I needed my girls! I wanted them to be in the 10-11 age range because they aren't babies anymore, but aren't self-conscious (yet). I knew I wanted to ask Cooper's best friend's sister (in the blue). She is so awesome, and quite surprisingly my kindred spirit! She is so animated and quirky and loves many things that I love (anime for one!). She is also the first person to tell me how much she loves my crazy colored hair. I knew we'd be the best of friends! I asked her Mom if she could be on the lookout for more girls to join us, and soon after, her daughter's friends in yellow and pink joined us. Then, last but not least, the girl in lavender joined us who goes to my boys' school (I'm not using their names to protect their privacy.) Believe it or not, the smallest girl is in the 5th grade, the tallest girl (in lavender) is in the 4th grade and the other two are in the 3rd grade! Crazy right? The height difference with kids is so amazing. You really never know just by looking at them! I really wanted a diverse group of girls and I wanted to make sure that they like being photographed!
Next I needed to settle on a location. I stumbled onto Barnsley Gardens a while back on Instagram and knew I had to take photos there! So, I secured a date to shoot (a fee was required). We had so much fun! I missed my turn and we were a little late and we had to race the light towards the end (we shot in the evening) but we got so many great shots. Lesson learned: allow more time, even more than you are anticipating! I would love to go back soon to take some more detail shots add to the "story".
For the styling, I wanted to add a consistent element throughout that tied them all together, so I added velvet ribbons to their hair and some to their dresses. I made the light blue hair bow out of super wide velvet ribbon. I'm a sucker for anything velvet!
The girls were such troopers! And if it looks like it was all work and no play, you are mistaken. These girls were so funny. Can you guess which one is a gymnast?
The shot above was something they wanted to do! Any excuse to climb on things. : )
The gardens and ruins at Barnsley certainly lived up to the images I saw online. I can't wait to go back. You can actually stay overnight at one of their cottages and they also have restaurants and even a German Beer Garden. So cute!
Oh! I almost forgot to add this photo! This was at the very end of the shoot and it was VERY dark, but the girls really wanted to get in the water (I had done it earlier myself to get a shot!). Their mothers and I thought it would make a cool photo, especially with the longer dresses. I think though once they put their feet in, they were questioning themselves because it was C-O-L-D, but they did it! And you can tell by the look on their faces that it was indeed cold. Ha. The photo came out too dark and grainy because I just didn't have enough light, but with the power of Photoshop, gave it a little life. It's a fun photo to have to remember such a fun evening. : )
Photography & Styling by Danielle Thompson.
©2015 Danielle Thompson.