As the saying goes, to truly understand someone you must walk a mile in their shoes. This advice is also relevant to Seattle magazine’s spring 2019 fashion feature, A Day at the Museum (in the April issue on newsstands now). If you’ve ever wondered what it takes to produce a feature like this, here’s a look behind the scenes at the planning and preparation that go into creating these glossy pages.
Approximately two and half months before the shoot date, Seattle magazine’s editorial team weighs in on themes that I have prepared. Along with paying attention to trends and what’s new, I want to capture what our local designers and boutique owners have have created and stocked, and represent that in an artistic and inspirational way.
Inspiration boards are the first step of planning a fashion feature
In the end, we decided to tell the story of this year’s spring fashions in tandem with the Museum of History and Industry’s new exhibit Seattle Style: Fashion/Function that opens on May 4th. This exhibit, curated by MOHAI’s costume and textile specialist Clara Berg, explores the evolution of fashion in the Pacific Northwest over the past 100 years. What better way to capture the multidimensional changes permeating our city than by juxtaposing today’s must-have wears against Seattle’s sartorial past?
That decision made, our art director Matt Cole and photographer extraordinaire Hayley Young scouted the museum’s campus to find the best spots for the shoot. Considerations included everything from how the sun’s position throughout the day would affect lighting to the order in which we’d shoot the various looks, to where “base camp” would be set up--i.e. the place where the creative team can do the necessary work between shots. This also involves some informal modeling on the part of Matt and myself.
If planning a fashion shoot can be compared to creating a piece of art, up until now the canvas has been selected and the studio booked. Now it’s finally time to paint. To accomplish this, we enlisted stylist Darcy Camden’s fine-tuned eye, models Ireland Scheer and Anjelika Frye’s striking good looks and hair and makeup artist Tiffany Lowry’s refined brush. After conversations about the look and styling of the piece are wrapped up we are ready for a day at the museum.
Photographer Alex Crook helps set up lighting for shoot with model Ireland Scheer. Photo by Samantha Bushman
There is no such thing as being fashionably late on shoot day and our 7 a.m. call time is proof of that. After a brief review of the day’s schedule the team gets to work. As the day progresses, a familiar rhythm unfolds: Hayley and Matt sets up each shot and ensures that the lighting and angle work well while Darcy and Tiffany expertly style and freshen up our models’ looks. Seattle magazine’s digital editor Daria Kroupoderova came up with a new way to show off each look using a 360 view of each look, accomplished between shots.
Model Anjelika Frye shows off one of the spring looks
During weeks after the shoot, the editors and I reviewed photos from each shot, and Matt worked on putting words and pictures together in a layout to bring the vision to life. The result is a series of photos we hope tells a story--about Seattle’s rich fashion past while inspiring readers to embrace what the spring season holds in store.