photo story of a model photographer in washington dc
I hadn’t booked photo sessions with models in a long while. commercial photography is fun but after a while it gets repetitive. so when I received email from amina gilyard, the reigning miss black america dc, asking if I would be willing to do a shoot with her, I thought it would be good to break out from the routine. she detailed in her email that she was the reigning miss black dc usa 2012. I thought it’s not everyday that you get a chance to photograph a beauty queen. my contribution with the shoot was like sponsorship of her pageantry efforts.
I don’t normally sponsor events or causes but I decided to help out. following initial discussions we agreed to a date. unlike most of my clients who needed business headshots, she wanted promotional modeling pictures. in her capacity as a beauty queen, she had to make appearances, speak at functions and get the pr machine rolling. for that reason, it’s not unusual to have a need for updated photographs. it had to be some professional pictures that were not too formal but still observe a certain etiquette. when she asked me if there were any makeup artists I could recommend, I suggested she find her own. so she promised to arrive at the studio already made up.
she walked into the studio in a body fitting red dress and a beautiful smile. after consultation, she detailed that she wanted to have 3 different looks, one with the red dress that she was wearing, another one with a blue dress adorned with a sash and her crown and one beauty shot. I took a mix of head shots, half-body and full body shots at a frantic pace, then we paused. wardrobe change. blue dress with sash and crown. with a few variations: wearing the crown, holding the crown, standing, sitting, we had enough to break the monotony.
finally, we did one set of beauty shots with a bustier. after reviewing the pictures, I promised to send her a link to the raw files later on the same evening. it was great fun and the shots were awesome.
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