BEST. SHOOT. EVER!

Usually I wait to do this, but I am so excited about this shoot that I wanted to share my thoughts about it NOW, rather than waiting for the images to be done ('cause they ain't be done fo' a WHILE... XD ) [By the way... for anyone that doesn't know what THIS: XD is... it's an emoticon.  Look at it sideways... it's a little dude laughing really hard.  I should probably put up a page about that since I always use it and people inevitably always ask me what the hell it means!  :D ] STEFANIA.

Pronounced: Steph-AH-knee-ah.  NOT. "Steph-ah-KNEE-ah"... as I had so much trouble remembering.

I resorted to just calling her "Stef."  XD

WHAT?  I had it ENGRAINED in me for weeks that it was the other way.  We had only spoken through text and messages on Model Mayhem... and the ONE TIME we Skyped, the connection was so broken that I couldn't manage to ask her how to pronounce her name before we just logged off.

It was an *accident*.  DON'T JUDGE ME!  ;)

So anyway... STEFANIA...

Shooting with Stefania was easily one of the MOST fun times I've ever had on a shoot!  And not only was I working with Stef, but I got to also work with the lovely Desiree who worked on Stef's hair, make-up and even acted as my reflector holder from time to time. ^_^  (I also need to take a moment to thank Stacy, Stef's cousin, who was along for the ride, who ALSO acted as my assistant, holding the flash stand for me so the wind didn't take it ... a second time O_o... and braving the water with us!).

Des was the first to arrive on the scene.  We instantly clicked and began talking about what was going to be done with Stef's makeup, hair, and some other fun non-photo shoot related things.  After conversing with her through messaging and on the phone I could tell that she was already going to be a HUGE help and I was right.  She was bubbly, enthusiastic, and had some great ideas!

Once Stef and Stacy showed up, it was pretty much the same story.  Everyone was chatting... I'm pretty sure we had about 25 different conversations going at once... between 4 of us XD... about hair, makeup, shoot intentions and ideas... and some other fun stuff.  You could definitely feel the excitement in my little living room!

Keith even came downstairs at some point to hang out and observe how things were done.  He was also nice enough to make Stacy some tea (Just in case you didn't know, I have the most wonderful husband in the world! ;) ).

Once we were through with the initial chatting, Des got right to work on Stef's makeup.  Don't get me wrong... "done with the initial chatting" doesn't mean we *stopped* chatting.  Quite the contrary... we chatted enough to make ... uh... Chatty Cathy... (Yeah... let's go with that...) want to scream "ENOUGH ALREADY!"  XD

Des and I decided to go with a smokey eye and pale lip for Stefania.  Later on in the shoot, she added a touch of gold to the inside of her eyes and then some red lip stain for the very last look, but you won't get to see those until the images are finished :P

As Stef was getting made over we talked about our hopes and dreams... unicorns... our love for long walks on the beach...  Okay, not really.  I honestly can't even remember 80% of what we talked about because like I said, at any given time there were at least 3 conversations happening at once, haha.  We talked about school... everyone's major... music (since Keith walked in... the conversation always goes to music when he's around... seeing as he's a musician, and one of the first things people ask is "What do you do for a living?"  XD ).  It was all very pleasant conversation.  :)

Stef pretty much brought her whole closet with her for me to pick from, and we *definitely* had a lot of choices!  There were SHOES everywhere... CLOTHES carpeting the floor... my cat got lost in a sea of cotton and we had to dive in to find him... it was a good time.  :D

At one point Stef even got to talking about a concept for *another* shoot she would like to do some day... I won't divulge the details because she says it's pretty unexpected and people who know her will be surprised to see it, but I promise you it'll be really cool if we can pull it off!  Let's just say it definitely gets away from the "Hey look, I'm just a gorgeous girl and I'm modeling for you!" type of shoot.  Before we even started *this* shoot we decided that her idea was an adventure the three of us wanted to take together, and the wheels began turning!

Once Des finished up Stef's makeup, she started on her hair.  We wanted something nice, but that would be able to withstand moisture since 1. it was humid as... uh... Florida?... out there and 2. There was some water involved in the shoot :D.  She did some nice soft curls that we played with throughout the shoot.  Leaving Stef's hair down... pulling it to the side... pulling it up... you know... all fashion-shoot-like.  :D

Once Stefania's hair was done, we were off to Ontelaunee Park!  Yeah... ONTELAUNEE.  Remember those "landscape" shots from WAAAAAAAY back when?  We're talking first post material here.  Well I went back.  And this time I took a model with me.  :D

Anyway...

LET ME TELL YOU, how FREAKIN awesome Desiree is.  Seriously.  That girl has got her shiz together!  Hair out of place?  She's got it.  Grass on the knees?  She's got it.  Clothing caught on something... Desiree has GOT THAT SHIZ COVERED!  Seriously.  Her help today was INVALUABLE.  She was incredible to work with and I look forward to working with her in the future!

Not only did she do all that, but she stayed on top of Stefania's make up... touched it up every time in between looks... helped me by holding reflectors... the works.  She even offered her back to me when I stated that I wished that our step ladder hadn't grown legs and walked off.  I didn't take her up on that... but in hindsight, I should have.  I would have given the camera to Stef or Stacy first, of course, because the only reason I would have taken Des up on her offer would have been for the AWESOME comical image that would have resulted from it.

But we were on a schedule.

And on a roll.

You don't stand in front of a speeding train when it's rolling fast downhill... you get squished.  So we'll left the back-ladder antics for another day.  XD

Not only was Desiree a Godsend... Stefania was, as I've already stated, fantastic.  Like I said, she's one of the best models I've ever worked with.  There was NO telling this girl how to pose.  All I'd have to say is, "Alright... here we go" and BAM!  Girl was in it already.

The only time she gave me sass was when I said, "Hey!  You know what would be a GREAT friggin idea?!  If I put you up in that tree and then I counted to 3... and when I hit 3, you FLIP upside-down and hang from that branch by your legs and give me your BEST Jane of the jungle, "Don't mess with me, I live with gorillas" look!"

"Um... no.  You're freakin crazy, and that's a REALLY stupid idea."

Okay.  So I didn't REALLY say that.  I just wanted an excuse to use the above photo in my blog, because when I was flipping through my camera I saw it and it made me giggle.  I have NO idea what she was talking about at that point, but somehow I managed to capture that expression while testing and adjusting the light, and I love it.  LOVE IT.  AND YOU LOVE IT TOO, UNDERSTAND?!  [Does anyone know why I'm so wired right now?  Who drugged my tea?  I guess this is just how I am when a shoot goes really well... I get super excited and all weird and crazy and... stuff. :D]

Anyway, the only thing that sucks about all this is that we got SO many different looks... and there's good things coming out of all of them... and I REALLY just want to stay home for the next 10 days and edit them down, but there's something called "work" that gets in the way of that.  Stupid work.  Go away.  I just wanna stay home and edit photos all day.  HEY!  That RHYMED!

Now, when Stefania contacted me about doing this shoot, one of the things she mentioned was wanting to do a "wet" look.  Well I took it a step further past "using a spray bottle to spritz" her and decided I was just gonna throw her straight into the friggin ocean.

Except there's no ocean here.

Next best thing?

A creek!

Luckily it turns out that Stacey is a lifeguard, so if any of us started to drown in the 12 inches of water we were splashing around in, she could save us.  I LOVE it when models bring useful escorts to the shoot!  XD

To try and avoid the whole "wet t-shirt contest" look, we used a water jug to splash Stef with water.

And speaking of which... ladies and gentlemen I have a special TREAT for you!  I present to you Desiree's modern dance interpretation of splashing water onto Stefania!

Tots awesome, don't you think?!

After playing with the water jug for a few frames, Stefania decided she just wanted to go swimming.  So swimming she went.  And then swimming I went, because being a photographer is a dirty job.  And sometimes it's a wet job.  Today it was both.  :D  But dude(s), it was TOTALLY worth it.  FO' REYULS!

I ABSOLUTELY.  CAN NOT WAIT.  To work with Stefania and Desiree again!

Keep your eyes pealed for the final images from the shoot!  They will definitely be posted, as always!  ^_^ CLICK HERE and 'like' Emily Rose Photography on Facebook!