(***Today’s blog post is written by the beautiful and talented, Addy Rogers. I’m so honored to be working with Addy, as she has been interning with me this year. She is incredibly creative, bright, and eager to help in any way. She joined in on a photo shoot last week at the Seattle Art Museum Sculpture Park and was a tremendous help. Addy keeps a fashion blog of her own, and she has written a guest post below with her observations of the session, and the experience of photographing little ones. Enjoy!***)
Addy, photographed by Elizabeth Messina:
Are You Kidding Me?
When you open a magazine and flip to a glossy page full of starry-eyed children modeling clothing reminiscent of a thirty-five year old fashion-forward professional, you usually get the impression that the kids are as well tailored as their couture costume. I mean, why else would they have the honor of inhibiting such delicate designs?
Let me tell you reader: kids are kids no matter how impressive their ensemble is. They expect you to learn their lingo, have treats, coax them with compliments, and buy their fake cookies (like our dear redheaded friend Freddie pictured below). Despite what the results may portray of sweet smiles and equally sweet attitudes, camera hungry tots know how to work your patience as capably as their poses. It’s almost like you have to wrack your brains for every beautiful adjective before *insert toddler name here* will agree to courtesy smile for you.
Before you start to get defensive and think to yourself “my kid is a model for models”, just think about their last picture with Santa.
When you think about it though, how self-assured did you feel as a child? I’m pretty sure I thought I had Gisele Bundchen beat, even though in my four-year old mind the prettiest woman known to man was Cinderella. You expect people to pamper and please you because “aren’t you just, like, so worth it”? Your four-year old time is the most valuable thing in the world because you and seven other people are virtually the only people that exist in the world and by default, you’re of course the most important.
In my opinion the best thing about kids under ten is their honesty. If they hate the pair of shoes they’re wearing or the way their hair is parted, they’ll let you know. If they feel like frowning, they will. And, if double chins are hilarious, that’s what you’re going to have to do if you want them to (honestly) laugh. The pictures linked to this post are telling a true story, if the subjects are laughing, it’s not because we made them fake it. It’s probably because I had a booger in my nose and the effect was instantaneous.
Mallory is not only an artist but also a multi-tasking parent when she’s “on set”. While she’s catching a (posing) refugee behind her back, she simultaneously digitalized the world’s cutest giggler. I call Mallory a “creative engineer”, mostly because she’s not concerned with building a façade or photo shopping the small freckles and pores that authenticate one’s face. Likewise, she doesn’t work to make kids into something or someone they’re not. If they’re not overly goofy she lets them smile conservatively and if they want to talk about sharks all day, that’s fine, “I’ll catch them between breaths,” she’ll delightfully remark. She sees the potential in the idiosyncrasies of childhood and life.
So as you think about how freakishly adorable these featured bambinos are, just remember there’s a lot more than what meets the eye. But hey! That’s why you hire a photographer (ambiguity intended) to capture the smiles that fortuitously appear as a memento and message of the joy your little one brings you day after day.
A few behind the scenes snaps and film capturing a bit of how this all “went down”:
Erik Egerdahl, a film maker who is creating a show reel for our kid’s sessions, which will be coming soon! Erik has quite the creative mind as well, and has just launched his unique startup film business, Open Door Creative, with a new website is on the way. I’ll keep y’all posted when it’s live!
Almost all of these darling clothing pieces are from the Holt and Lulu line, designed right here in Seattle! Check out the line here.
(Video credit, David Jenkins)