Behind the scene: the photo shoots
The photo shoot is a key step in the process of creating a sewing pattern. The one and only thing that represents months of work and development are the PHOTOS! They must clearly show the garment, its different details and drape, but they must also represent the style of the brand and its aesthetic.
The choice of fabrics used for the prototypes is important. It’s best to avoid black and white because they don’t highlight garment details. The fabric is also chosen for its ability to catch the light, to match the model’s skin colour and hair and, of course, for its drape.
It’s an event that requires organisation and planning. In my last photo shoot, for example, I had to work around four people’s schedules (including Audrey, who came specially from Marseille), book train tickets, organize shuttles, etc. Of course, before the photo shoot itself, several fittings were scheduled to find the perfect match of model/pattern/fabric/background and to make various adjustments.
On the big day, when all the outfits are ready, ironed, hung, and the models have arrived and are radiant, it’s pure joy. Everything happens peacefully and naturally, with no hairdresser or make-up artist. It’s this very philosophy I’d like to share with you.
The 5 Mantras
Mantra Number 1: No make-up. Without imposing anything drastic, I invite my models to not wear make-up. I’m not a huge fan of make-up. I don’t think it’s necessary for a photo shoot for casual clothes, designed for everyday wear. Less is more. Same goes for nail polish or jewerly.
Mantra Number 2: No sophisticated hairstyles. For my first photo shoots, I posed alone. I went to the hairdresser in the morning, before the session, and asked for ‘wavy’ hair. Since I launch the Jazz pattern, several women have joined the shooting adventure and they are only available on Mondays. As hair salons are closed on Mondays (I live in the country and that the only hair salon open on a Monday is in the shopping mall of the closest town...), it was the ideal moment to go even more natural. So, after removing the make-up, I also removed the hairstyling. I asked my models to come as if it were ‘a good hair day’.
Mantra Number 3: Bare feet. It’s so much easier than trying to find shoes that match the outfit, in the right size and colour. Furthermore, I find it more natural, uncomplicated, and we can focus on the garment.
Mantra Number 4: Movement. I design clothes that are made for every day, and every day is made of movement. The best way to represent my designs is to move during the photo shoot. More specifically, we put on music and dance! We get up, we get down, we jump, we exercise. After several hours taking photos, we all feel exhausted, but great.
Mantra Number 5: Always be accompanied by my photographer Lorette. We’ve been working together for two years. We needed a few sessions to get used to each other, to understand each other and to get the chemistry that we have now.
And what about photo retouching? It’s only required to touch-up the background and light, rarely for skin, and never for garments.