As a summer intern, you expect to do things like make coffee runs, spend long hours filing paper work, answering e-mails, weekly projects, and all the other odd jobs no one really wants to do. You do not, however, expect to be offered the opportunity to work with a professional photographer for two days, acting like a model, and getting to wear each jean in the upcoming Fall line. Not a bad assignment for the week!
DAY ONE: PRODUCT SHOOT
The first day was a product shoot, myself and Erika Powell, Miss South Carolina 2012, spent the day taking pictures in Beija-Flor’s newest denim styles. At first I was intimidated watching Erika strike pose after pose, while I stood there either clueless on what to do or shyly offering up a stance acting like it was unintentional unless the overall consensus was positive. As the day progressed, being in front of the camera began to feel more natural and I really started to enjoy the shoot.
(Kathy and I in between product shots)
DAY TWO: LIFESTYLE SHOOT
Day two was a lifestyle shoot. I was dressed head to toe in some of the nicest clothes, shoes, and accessories I’ve ever worn. It was a long day, my feet were killing me, but no part of me wanted it to be over. I got to spend a lot of time with Kathy and Emilie who are so much fun to hang out with and beyond generous. Kathy was right by my side the entire day making sure I was having a good time, helping me fix my hair and makeup, accessorizing the outfits, and even hanging my clothes to help keep me organized. Emilie of course provided some good comic relief and was so encouraging; it really helped me to feel comfortable since I had absolutely no clue what I was doing.
(Me in Aaron’s studio wearing Beija-Flor’s Emilie Bootcut in Peace Blue)
(Aaron and Erika in the studio)
I think the whole experience really exemplifies what Beija-Flor is all about! Beija-Flor jeans are not meant to only flatter a size 0 model, a summer intern like myself can come in and find dozens of perfect fitting jeans. (This is a wonder that I’ve seen come to life among many women of all ages and sizes, my sister, my roommates mom, my grandmothers friend, etc.) The shoot also showed how Kathy and Emilie “do work”. Kathy told me something that really stood out; she said that the best way to do business is in a way where everyone involved comes out on top. They were getting pictures to help their business, but at the same time letting me have a once in a lifetime experience, promoting J. Aaron Greene Photography, and using tops from local Greenville boutiques that would be recognized.
The photographer, Aaron Greene, was amazing. He is artistic, patient, confident, funny, humble, and not to mention ridiculously talented. And it only took about 5 minutes to realize all of this after walking in his studio, looking around, and talking with him. His ultimate goal is that his pictures turn out beautiful on their own without needing to photo shop, and he nails it every time. I also enjoyed getting to know his summer intern, Kelly, who is also a Clemson student. She helped me throughout the whole day and I really enjoyed having her there for all the shoots, it was like having a friend come along who I could to talk to and ask for honest opinions.
(Part of the team - Kelly, Aaron’s intern, and Katie, make-up artist)
Just when I thought attending the Atlanta Apparel Market was about as good as it gets, Beija-Flor let me in on this exciting venture that was without a doubt the highlight of my summer. I appreciate Kathy and Emilie asking me to do this photo shoot when there are so many experienced models who would jump at the chance to be a part of what I experienced this week. Even though I knew choosing me to be the model meant a little more time and patience, I never felt like that thought even crossed their minds because they were genuinely excited for me and looked at this as an opportunity to enhance my internship by seeing another side of working in the fashion industry.
However the excitement isn’t over! Now I will be on the other side helping out Emilie and Amanda with our new website….and waiting on the final pictures to arrive later this week!