It has been awhile since I've blogged a journal post, and if you follow me on Facebook and Instagram you have probably seen a lot of photos and posts about Kansas City Fashion Week. If you aren't already following me on social media, click here. Lately I've been getting a lot of questions about what I am doing with modeling, how I find photographers to work with, etc. Read on friends and lurkers, I am about to address these issues.
When I started Luna Elise nearly a year ago, I definitely didn't consider myself a "model," just a girl with an overdeveloped closet. However, ever since I started shooting with Rebecca from Mira Visu Photography way back in 2012 (see pic above for a throwback to my first ever photoshoot!), she was insistent on my "model status." For those people asking how I get professional photos done--the answer is, start by having photographer friends. For most photographers I've encountered, photography is their passion and they welcome a model with open arms to try out new locations, lighting or styles of photography! Remember, you should NEVER have to pay for modeling images--there are so many talented photogs willing to trade creative time!
At this point you are probably saying, "come on Elise, you can't have THAT many photography friends!" To that, I say, yes that's true. I don't even have that many friends in general (too stressful). Once again, Mira Visu's Rebecca has been instrumental by adding me to a photography group on Facebook. I have met so many great photographers through that group who have been excited to work with me. The point here is, value the connections you make, AND learn how to recognize good connections. That guy in your Instagram DMs who wants to shoot in his basement at night=no. Photographer setting up a shoot through a Facebook private and pre-vetted group=yeah man! When you work with a photographer you like, make a friendship with them, and you never know what could come from it. I shot with Dave Gillispie for the Women of K-State Swimsuit calendar in 2012 and we are still friends who shoot together to this day.
My location has made a huge difference in my blog. I live near KC now and I take full advantage of that. I try to get into the city at least once a week to work with a photographer, meet friends or check out an event. You never know where you're going to meet people!
After a year of blogging, I turned my perception of myself as a model on its head by getting involved in Kansas City Fashion Week. I tried out for the runway and will be walking in three of the four shows in March! This achievement has been HUGE. I've gotten to meet so many amazing designers, models and photographers--and fashion week hasn't even happened yet. I won't lie, I'm slightly nervous for my first time on a runway, but I am excited to push myself out of my comfort zone and take my blog modeling to something next level! Get tickets to see me walk the runway HERE
When you book three shows your first season of fashion week, you get noticed and people want to book you. I was honored to be chosen to represent the first launch of the new Moda Shoot collaborative sponsored by the Kansas City Fashion Council! More on that (and all the photos) in another blog post.
The more I have put myself out there, lately I have had photographers approaching me instead of vice versa. Last weekend, I did a fun commercial shoot for ShoptheLocale.com shot by Jerry Wang Photography. It is interesting to try out the commercial side of photography and fun to meet even more fashion and photography friends!
I am also dabbling in the design end of fashion...but that's all I have to say about that, for now. :)
So, to summarize this tutorial-turned-explication--I am at an exciting point in a process that started years ago when Rebecca first wanted me to style and model a shoot I'm using my resources, feeling things out and having a great time doing it. If photo shoots, runway fittings, and red carpet charity events sound out of reach...don't be so cynical (rich words coming from me, I know). I never in a million years thought I would find these types of opportunities in KC, but you never know until you try. Unfortunate news for the extra lazy out there--you have to actually work to make it happen.