Monday, 26 September 2011

Behind the scenes with Starstruck (and a Chicken...?)

On Saturday, Starstruck Designs embarked on its first ever location photo shoot, which turned out to be incredibly good fun, very hard work, and from the preliminary shots i've seen, extremely successful!  I really wanted to be able to showcase my work "in situ", and so enlisted in the help of an incredibly talented team of professionals to create a portfolio of images which I simply cannot wait to show you!  However, whilst I wait (im)patiently for them to arrive on my desk, I thought i'd share a "day in the life of" account with you...

The day dawned with the beautiful sunshine that I had been praying for all week, and I packed up the car and headed to the venue, Stoke Hall, which turned out to be the most beautiful, intimate wedding venue in Notts and Lincs that I have ever seen.  Owners, Diane and Brian, were so patient and welcoming throughout the whole day, despite us tramping through their home for almost seven hours! However, the very first person to greet me as I arrived was a very sociable chicken who seemed to think she was part of the family, and that access to the Hall was her right.

She became quite a fixture throughout the day, I think at some point all of us had a go at trying to chase her out of the house as she found her way inside again and again!

After a quick tour of Stoke Hall, we chose the Orangery as our base due to the fantastic natural lighting, and started setting up hair and make-up equipment, and laying out all the accessories into sets ready for the quick changes that were to come!  Model, Jess, soon arrived with her mum Julie, who was incredibly helpful when it came to helping with accessories changes, and keeping track of what had and hadn't been photographed!

The very talented Karen Kemp, Lincoln based hairdresser who created 2 fantastic looks on our models, here expertly coiffing Nikki's hair:

And equally as talented was our Lincoln based make up artist, Helen Mitchell who created the most beautiful looks on both models, here finishing off Jess's make-up:

Whilst our models were being "beautified" (like they needed it....gorgeous ladies!), Lincolnshire wedding photographer, Richard King and his rather lovely wife, Elizabeth were scoping out the venue for perfect locations to shoot.  The cherry on the cake when booking Richard, is that Elizabeth just so happens to be a highly sought after wedding planner! She brought a real perfectionist attitude to the shoot and I really do consider myself exceptionally lucky to have had not just one, but two fabulous professionals taking care of the photography.

Both Karen and Helen stayed with us all day to ensure that hair and make-up remained absolutely perfect throughout. So with hair and make-up finished, and dresses on, we started shooting...

Moving from one beautiful room to another, stopping briefly in the stunning hallway to take advantage of the impressive staircase:

And I had to include this photo as it makes me smile so much - Spot the model hiding out of shot!

Both models, Jess and Nikki, worked really hard as we moved from room to room, and swapped one set of accessories for another.  Photographer, Richard, knew exactly which parts of the rooms to use to create the best effects, and to make the most of the natural light that streamed in through the huge windows.  He also shows enormous patience with me as I nipped in and out of shots adjusting a tiara here and a necklace there!

Then, as the day got later, and the sunlight softened we headed out into the Secret Garden.  An exquisite walled garden, hidden entirely from view until you are standing in it.  Flowers of every conceivable colour, in every size and shape you could imagine, just everywhere.  And in the very center, a beautiful little fountain - the sound of the gently trickling water was the only noise to be heard.  I could have spent hours sat out there drinking in the colours and the peacefulness, however there was simply too much to be done, and I only managed to snap a few photos, but they give you a glimpse of the beauty:

I've already had a sneaky preview of some of the professional photos taken by Richard and they are absolutely stunning.  He managed to take photos of over 20 headpieces, and about 15 necklaces, with matching bracelets and earrings, on models, close up of each piece on models, and then individual product shots on both white and black backgrounds.  He worked tirelessly throughout the day and I think he would have carried on a lot longer had Elizabeth not kept him in check!

All in all, the day was absolutely brilliant and I couldn't have asked for a more professional team to have worked with.  I would highly recommend every single person within their role, with absolute confidence that they will not disappoint!  There was so much more to the day, but I fear I may have gone on too long already!  Watch this space for some of the professional shots soon!

Huge thanks to everyone involved in the shoot:

Venue:  Stoke Hall

Photography:  Richard King     Facebook Page

Hair:  Karen Kemp   Facebook Page

Make-up:  Helen Mitchell    Facebook Page

Models:  Jess and Nikki

Accessories:  Starstruck Designs     Facebook Page

And a little thank you to Elizabeth for all her help too:  Elizabeth King

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