Project Beauty 2019 celebrated teens in their natural beauty. No make up. No labels or designer clothes. Just the girls in their natural confident skin. Project Beauty showed them that their beauty shines brightest when they are positive, confident, purposeful, comfortable, kind, fabulous.
They are ENOUGH. Just the way they are!
Thank you to all the girls who participated in Project Beauty 2019 and for sharing their thoughts on natural beauty.
“I think ones personality and the way they treat people makes them beautiful in their own way” – Avery
“Girls can learn that when they are totally and utterly themselves they are the most amazing & beautiful versions of themselves” – Maddie.
“Girls can learn to love their bodies the way they are and see that they don’t need to change themselves for other people” – Claire.
“I think that beauty comes from inside ourselves. Kindness, love, compassion, honesty, determination, and respect are truly the most beautiful things about a person” – Madi
“Everyone is unique” – Grace
“I got to see my true self and not a shy little girl hiding behind makeup or clothes” – Katie.
“My personality and other people’s overall attitude is what makes a person beautiful” – Samantha
“These girls can learn that they can be who they are and they are gorgeous” – Mila
“Girls can learn not only what they love about themselves on the outside but also on the inside” – Gigi.
“I believe that any girl, short or tall is beautiful in their own, unique way” – Abby.
“Girls can learn that they are enough and that they are good just the way they are” – Ayden.
“The way that someone interacts with the people around them allows them to reflect the light and joy of others, and that’s beautiful” – Nora.
“I think that I am beautiful when I have a positive attitude and have confidence in myself because I look happier and am smiling a lot more” – Olivia
“The girls said they felt beautiful, pretty and accepted just the way they are. They felt visible” – Robyn
“What makes others beautiful is their personality and what is on the inside. Someone can be beautiful on the outside and not be so nice on the inside” – Morgan.
“The way someone carries themselves and the confidence they show makes them beautiful” – Jordana.
“Project Beauty boosts girls’ confidence, and shows them that they are beautiful especially when they are all natural and embracing who they are” – Taylor
I invited Linda Rey from Aurora Consulting to be a guest writer on the Planet Photo Blog. We met last year at a networking event and I was impressed by her desire to mix up the networking scene in New Milford. It was such a pleasure having her in the studio and I loved picking her brain and getting her perspective on personal branding and marketing! I also loved the she switched out images on her blog and started to use the images we created IMMEDIATELY! Check out her website and follow her on social media.
In Linda’s words:
In this digital age, the B word is thrown around a lot when it comes to businesses marketing their business. No, the “B” word isn’t “business” but that’s a good one too.
What’s the “B” word? You know what it is: Branding.
There are many tools available to download many, Many, MANY stock images to market your business and your brand. We can also add graphics and logos and textures to those images. We’ve used these tools and it’s been fun.
But, we knew we wanted to level-up our brand. We decided it was time for a professional photo shoot to focus on us as the BRAND. We were mindful of our “brand” when presenting to the wide world of prospective clients for our business. Nothing speaks to your brand like a spectacular picture of YOU.
We knew to get to the next level, we needed Janet at Planet Photo to help create those images. Janet is a gem. She is the consummate professional, but also a creative genius when it comes to representing your brand on film.
Her ideas are fresh and the event was fluid with changing it up so we would have a library of images as part of the marketing mission.
We wanted to create a personal connection with our prospects and clients. That’s what Janet helps to achieve. With a personal connection, your audience of customers and clients become intimately familiar with You as the Brand.
Now, we can merge our pictures with our words. The reaction has been instant and overwhelmingly positive. Our audience clearly “gets the picture.”
She can’t wait to hear from you to talk about your brand possibilities. If you’re thinking about it, start talking with her so you can envision the possibilities. You’ll be so incredibly happy!
Natural Portraits to celebrate your natural beauty.
Join Project Beauty 360
June 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 2019
YOU ARE ENOUGH!
Join me in celebrating the natural beauty of teens. I would like to build on the success of last year’s Project Beauty 360 campaign and photograph as many local teen girls as possible. Let’s show the world that you are beautiful just the way you are. Come on your own or with a group of friends to be photographed at the Planet Photo studio in black and white.
There is a $50 suggested fee – we will be sending a donation to The Women’s Center in Danbury.
You are encouraged to wear a simple black, white, grey or denim outfit.
No make-up, just a clean, well moisturized face with clear lip gloss.
Clean natural hair.
I will send you a link to an app with a few images from your shoot and I will share the images on social media with very minimal editing – you (and your parents) have to be cool with that so I will have model release forms for you.
The senior year is an emotional roller coaster of “lasts”, senior nights, milestones and graduations. Senior portraits have been growing in popularity over the last few years. But why? You have loads of photos on your phone right? But how many portraits do you have on your walls? On your desk at work or framed on your Grandparents bookshelf? The graduating seniors of today are probably the most photographed generation ever but how many of those images have ever been printed? Displayed? Loved and appreciated on a daily basis?
You should choose a senior portrait photographer the same way you would choose a photographer for any other type of life event, i.e. newborn, family, or for a wedding. Not all photographers shoot all genres of photography. Some specialize in commercial or food photography, newborns, wedding and some are senior portrait photographers.
It’s important that the style of the photographer, their personality AND what they offer be good fit for you and your family. One of the biggest mistakes people make is simply comparing photographer’s prices on paper. There are a lot of things that determine what a photographer charges, and so simply comparing pricing doesn’t help you understand that. Remember you are not just paying for the paper the portrait is printed on.
So how do you choose your photographer? Here is a list to guide you:
1. Style – view their portfolios, either online or in person to get a feel for the style of photography you want. Two photographs can both be technically correct but both may convey a completely different style. Do you like the majority of images on their website?
2. Styling assistance for the shoot. An experienced senior portrait photographer knows what looks good in portraits and what will be problematic. Some recommend professional make up. Draw on their experience and knowledge in this area.
3. Read their bio’s – learn a little bit about them and why they do what they do, and what their approach to their business is like.
4. Understand their experience – a photographer with years of experience is often more expensive than someone just starting out. That makes sense, right? It should show in their work as well. While many people think that because they have a great camera they can take great pictures, there is so much more to professional photography than that, and your photographer should have credentials they can share with you as well. Ask to see a full gallery from one shoot. Most people can show you the one standout portrait from a variety of shoots but will you have a broad selection of images to choose from?
5. Word of mouth – word of mouth is a great way to find potential photographers in your area. Happy clients like to share their experiences, and unhappy ones even more so. Look for testimonials from real clients though and beware of popularity contests on social media!
6. Products – look at what is offered by the photographer / studio, and make a list of what is most important to you. Professional photographers do the research on albums, canvases, print labs etc. so that they can stand behind the quality and longevity of the product. It might save you from an expensive mistake.
7. Set a budget – like anything else, know what you can and are willing to spend. You can find a photographer in every price category but as with many things in life you get what you pay for. Experience, quality and originality are usually worth a little extra.
8. Availability – if you want to shoot at a certain time of year. For example, in the milder temperatures of fall in New England, then a good photographer is going to be busy. Book early and make sure you have a contingency plan for bad weather.
9. On location or in a studio – some photographers only shoot on location and spend lots of time scouting for the perfect locations. Some prefer to shoot in a studio – some of the best editorial magazine images are shot in the studio and they do not have to be boring! Ask to see a photographers examples of both. Maybe you can combine both in your session?
10. Light. One of the most important factors in creating a successful portrait is being creative with light. Full sun, golden hour, back light, OCF (off camera flash) you will see and hear a lot of terms thrown around but a good portrait photographer can use light to create dynamic and interesting portraits in almost all situations. Remember senior portraits are supposed to show who you are at this most incredible time of your life – they are not supposed to look like the school portraits you have every year. Have fun being creative!
The Final Selection
Once you’ve narrowed it down to two or three potential photographers, it is probably a good idea to meet them in person. You are going to be spending a few hours with them before, during and after your shoot, so make sure you get along. A good senior photographer realizes that they need to provide results for the parents and the senior so there will be a selection of formal, casual, edgy, and “safe” portraits.
Remember to enjoy every minute of senior year. All the “lasts” will be over before you know it and then you move onto the next set of “firsts”. Don’t worry I’ll have a box of tissues ready for mom and dad and they’ll have portraits on their wall.
People ask me all the time, and to be honest the answer is actually a little different every time. The idea for Breakfast at Tiffany’s started when a cute new cafe, River and Rail, opened on Bank Street in New Milford. I loved the vibe and the decorations and my brain started to fill with shoot ideas, somehow it landed on that scene from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Audrey Hepburn sitting in a cafe in her iconic black dress, jewels and little tiara and the shoot idea was born.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s is a novella by Truman Capote published in 1958. In it, a contemporary writer recalls his early days in New York City, when he makes the acquaintance of his remarkable neighbor, Holly Golightly, who is one of Capote’s best-known creations. The movie is set in the 60’s and Holly’s style has inspired women of all ages ever since.
We needed an Audrey so I spoke to Cadence about adding the Breakfast at Tiffany’s to her individual shoot. She loved the idea, we just had to find an open day – never easy with teens these days!
I wanted to include as many of our Bank Street neighbors as possible so I pitched our shoot to Stacey from Blush Couture and Karen from Joe’s Salon – we were definitely going to need help with hair and make up. Alexis from Joe’s Salon literally worked magic with Cadence’s long hair and Stacey gave her the right make up vibe. Luckily, Sue Snow of Dejavudu Vintage was once again able to draw from her amazing vintage collection and she kept me on the straight and narrow so that our styling was on point and pretty accurate to the era of the movie (can you hear me enthusiastically saying “oh this dress is cute, we should use this?” and her cringing because the dress was way too contemporary!)
Robertson’s Jewelers entrusted us with diamond jewels for our first look – they were absolutely stunning and made us all feel nervous but they added just the right amount of real bling to our shoot so it was worth it. I don’t know how the movie stars do it on Oscar night!
Swank on Bank had a long white shirt and we even recruited Simba the cat for some of the apartment images. I hope you love the images as much as we do and maybe we can introduce Breakfast at Tiffany’s to a new generation.
I have to admit I haven’t watched Game of Thrones!
I am in love with the styling though and absolutely crazy about the costumes and locations – we actually visited Iceland last year and heard over and over how parts of GOT was filmed there, but I felt like I was just too late to the party. Eight seasons to catch up? That is a lot of catching up!!!
My lack of personal watching history did not stop us for recreating a Game of Thrones theme for our Planet Photo Tribe group shoot. We had the perfect location (OK, I admit that I would have liked to fly to Iceland with the team but that was not quite in the budget….but we had the next best thing – Kent Falls State Park in Connecticut).
The falls usually freeze during the winter but you know what a crazy winter we had this year (do you remember our whiteout shoot with no snow?), so it was actually pretty warm on the day of our shoot. Can you even imagine how nervous I was on the drive up there? I was literally holding my breath when we turned into the parking lot. Thankfully, it was snowy, frozen and perfectly Game of Thrones-esque.
We were so excited to have Sue Snow from Deja Vudu Vintage as our stylist for this shoot. She has an eye for detail and a seemingly endless supply of amazing vintage clothes and accessories so she took our shoot to the next level.
It might have been unseasonably warm but it was still a little chilly standing on the ice waterfall so thank you to our models: Zoe, Sam, Cassie, Madi, Olivia and Julia.
I guess I can’t resist the hype any longer. Game of Thrones is the next thing on my binge watch list.