Free People x Summer Style

Last week, I had the pleasure of collaborating with Miss Juliette Luchini, amazing stylist and social media manager for Free People Boston! "I have four girls coming!" she exclaimed: YAHOO! Sami, Olivia, Priya, Juliette and Alondra strutted their beautiful, confident selves all around Cambridge. On the way, we stumbled across a sassy gaggle of geese (I mean like 50+) and a baby bunny, too! Here's to Free People's 2016 summer line!

Jennie // Free People March Feature

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”

Marcel Proust


Last weekend, I had the immense pleasure of shooting some products from Free People’s new spring line for their Boston area retail stores. It couldn’t have been a more gorgeous, sixty degree day outside, and Jennie brought the rest of the sunshine with her infectious laugh and gorgeous bouquet of sunflowers. If you ever need a break from the hustle and bustle of the city, take a stroll through the Fenway Victory Gardens. These little garden plots sit in the sunshine in the middle of the city, but it is always filled with serenity and quietness. Everyone involved was thrilled with the results, and I'm excited to say that I'll be working with Free People again in the future! 

Julia // Catch a falling star

We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle.
- Marilyn Monroe

Julia was just incredible to work with. She's been on the "list" for months now - that little list I keep tucked away of people I'll eventually be brave enough to ask to photograph! The sun decided to make a grand exit that day, and although my hopes of golden sunshine kissing her blonde locks, I was pleasantly surprised that the gusty winds and diffused light could not have been more perfect. We walked through what was left of the Copley Farmer's Market, bounced around the alleyways, had a tea break, and shot some super cool night portraits before we sillily lost each other running to catch the T. Enjoy this blue eyed doe, she's the best! <3

Travel diaries // Southern charm

North Carolina: A place I never thought I’d visit.

Well, I did! My best friend moved down there, so I paid her a visit in her new state. Besides the culture shock, the accents, and the heat, the landscape of NC is breathtaking. The sunsets never failed to amaze, trust me friends: we chased them while blasting the classical radio station, which was doing a movie score night, and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to say that I drove after the setting sun while the theme from E.T. played in the background. Magical? I think so.

We went antiquing, sampled the almighty Sonic MANY times (half priced shakes after 8pm, who can resist?), pet some cows, went river tubing in the Appalachians, and ate chicken & waffles for breakfast.

Spoiler alert, she’s moving back to Boston (which is amazing!) - but getting to see the South was indeed an interesting trip.

XO, LM

Sunshine crew // Martha's Vineyard

The ocean stirs the heart, inspires the imagination and brings joy to the soul.

Monday morning at 4am, Hayley and I departed for our first visit to Martha’s Vineyard. Miss Amanda has been working at the hospital on the island and living there all summer, and we really missed our favorite nurse! 

We got in, packed a beach bag, got some amazing sandwiches from Edgartown Meat & Fish Market, and headed off to the sun & sand. Well, it was a lot of sun & sand - we all baked for hours in the sun, which of course didn’t go well for your pale photographer here. I’m quite crispy now even after 3 rounds of sunscreen and laying under a blanket (or rather, a tablecloth from Anthropologie).

Kelsey, Eleni, Hayley, Amanda and I all loved exploring Oak Bluffs downtown, and with steaming hot pizza from Giordano’s, we set up a picnic on the beach and smashed that hot, gooey cheese like it was our last meal. 

These girls were so fantastic, and so was the island! Enjoy the sunshine everyone, enjoy the waves.

Bernie // Chicago beauty

They say you can always tell a tourist by which way they're looking - natives look ahead, tourists look up. I mean, I can't really argue with that! My neck is always craned, mesmerized by the sparkly new buildings when I visit a new city. And although this was my third visit to Chicago in a year, I still do that. 

This trip was a little different, because I had so much time to spend doing so many fun things! I was out for 8 days, so I knew I would want to drop the tourist act for a while and do some Young Wild & Free signature shoots in this drop dead gorgeous city. And then came my muse, Miss Bernie.

"WOW" would be the word that comes to mind.

It's a little odd shooting in a city that isn't yours - in Boston, I'm bouncing around in weird alleys, diving across main roads, scoping out parking garages and rooftops, and pretty much know what I'm doing and where I'm going. New city? Not a clue. It's a very "I go where the wind blows" type of situation, but those are good for the soul. Bernie made all my dreams come true of shooting a fantastically stunning young lady in the Loop - she's such a sweetheart. So without further ado, BERNIE everyone!

Kate // Ragged wood

There's something I love about winter light.

 

It's warm and bitter all at once, and the sun is in such a different place than it is in August that you can go to the same location and it will yield completely different results. It shines with a silver sparkle, with the usual warm gold tones, but there's something just different about winter sun than summer sun. And it's beautiful.

Kate just makes my heart sing, and so does the forest, and the blue sky, and the hills, and the trees that all seem to be the exact same height. Also, so does the song Ragged Wood by Fleet Foxes. I name a lot of my posts after fantastic songs - this was on repeat while editing, it's definitely worth a listen.

Kate laying down in the reeds: "I just know there's a family of snakes down here waking up saying 'WHO IS SQUISHING MY CHILDREN'"

Fortunately, we did not meet any snakes, just lots of dogs, and we managed to not get shot by hunters, although we were attacked by big sharp sticks in the ground, and also survived wet bottoms and unavoidable mud puddles. We always manage to come out laughing. 

Hayley // Morning song

As a photographer, winter can be a bit challenging. Golden hour is at 2:45pm. It's freezing. Everything is dead. And usually there is nasty snow kicked on the side of the roads, not the pretty fluffy kind before the plows come, but that mound of dirt covered ice that never seems to melt from the mall parking lot. Luckily, we haven't had much snow (I hate driving in the snow!) - so inspiration is still rolling in. Stuck in that winter rut? Get up right now and go shoot something. GO! Now! Sometimes we all need a kick in the pants and a good shot to get the creative juices flowing.

I'm dying to visit the Pacific Northwest, where the landscapes are unbelievable and the Redwoods covered in snow give the word "majestic" a run for its money. Alas, I'm here, in Massachusetts. So Hayley & I set off on an early morning adventure to the farm, then up north to New Hampshire. We just drove and stopped every mile or two, jumped out of the car and walked around! I've taken that drive dozens of times to the flea market in Hollis, and we found waterfalls and rivers and farms and the most beautiful places that I've always passed by. It was nice to just slow down and look at what was there. It was beautiful! And so was Hayley <3 

Emily // The unexpected

Em in Boston. It's been an idea for a while -- this beautiful nugget has graciously modeled for me before (throwback to The Kids Are Alright), and WAY before... Miss E was on my first ever "photo shoot" - and trust me, I heavily emphasize the quotes... end of 7th grade pool party. I position five girls (she got front/center) in their bathing suits in a field. With clouds. And trees. And made it black & white, all with my trusty point and shoot. Well obviously that was the day I became a self-proclaimed photographer. Oh, the embarrassment. But since day one, she's been there cheering me on, my biggest fan. She remembers every shoot and photo I've taken... seriously. From my point n shoot days, to my first little Canon Rebel, DeviantART... and up till now, she knows them all and it's so incredible to have her love and support. 

We went to school in the same zip code, now we're college-ing in the same one, too. This girl is a CRAZY talented actress... she was always the lead role in all the plays we were in together, and even when she was 13 she was knocking it out of the park. She still is at BU, and trust me, she's gonna go far in life.

She took everything in on the side of a ledge by the waterfront, and unexpectedly, stumbled upon an abandoned office building. Neither of us has ever experienced anything like it... it was crazy to say that least.

Explore the unexpected. Don't forget to tell the awesome people in your life how awesome they are.

Sarah // Sunkissed

It's funny how 3 miles and 862 frames can start a friendship. 

Awkwardly waiting for the elevator to the photo department, I finally just blurt out "Would you ever want to shoot with me?!" It's bad enough staring at a person every time you see them, studying their face and fashion sense... eventually I end up asking the person to join me on a little photoventure. Sarah was totally game and the week after, on a Friday night we set out to the Berklee area to start on the bridge over the highway. Can you believe this girl has never been asked to model?! Are you kidding me?! What's not to LOVE about her! And after walking and walking, exploring places I've never been to before, I got to know what a fantastic person she is on top of her striking good looks.

We were out for almost two hours, and she wouldn't stop LAUGHING! :) We both had such a fantastic time, and topped it off with some well earned Starbucks. I spent the whole rest of the night editing her pictures... 

Whew. ENJOY Sarah's amazing sunkissed shoot!

// Making a splash

June 1 - kicking off the summer with a pool party!

Planned over dinner with Leah Detolla, my pool party concept finally came true! Nobody's pool in the area is open yet, so when Leah told me hers was, I was so excited!

My six lovelies came to the Detolla compound, and we splashed around and braved the chilly water, drinking down Izzes and snacking on Twizzlers. It isn't an official shoot if there aren't any Twizzlers present! I even got my pale ass into the water... grabbing the side of the pool with one hand trying not to dunk my camera in the other in the 10ft end. Safety first!

Thank you to Leah, Connor, Deirdra, Joe, Pauline, Meredith & Jenny for making this happen! You're all so much fun. 

Just doing what I love doing... making a splash.

// America's sweethearts

Attention: We've got SUN again! After a week or two of pretty crappy weather, I'm pleased to announce that on Thursday, the sun made an appearance and it was GLORIOUS.

I got some lovely peeps and we had so much fun. I debated naming the shoot "#poorcam", but I suppose there are better fitting names than that. Cam got bonus points for getting a bucket of soapy water dumped over his head... a trooper indeed. But now his car is nice and shiny :) I was just so excited for this shoot, another check on the countdown to my book being sent out to be printed, a warm and sunny day with beautiful, honest, hilarious people.

Muchas gracias to Cam, Pat, Kate, Jenny & Sarah - you were rockstars. And thank you to Barb too for the help assisting! 

God bless summers in America.

// The kids are alright

Lena's

Epic

Shoot.

The Kids Are Alright has been a shoot in progress for over 2 months now. It was my first production shoot - I had five models, an antique convertible, a crazy beach day. 

Of course, Murphy reared its ugly head and everything that could go wrong... pretty much did. I rented underwater housing for my camera for a section of the shoot that was planned to be in a pool - then I got a call saying their last housing had broken and they weren't getting it repaired because my camera isn't being manufactured anymore. I find a beautiful vintage multicolor VW Bug... the engine is shot and is getting a new one in from California. I cut out half of my shoot, I was scrambling for my last model, and on top of it, the weather predicted rain, rain, rain. I got another car, but not if it was going to rain. I was a mess - stressed for days before the shoot, overwhelmed, never knowing whether to cancel... these poor kids already took off work, some were coming from an hour to two hours away. Everything was terrible!

The cherry on top was the fact that I was doing this as one of the last shoots for my book - I'm on a deadline to get it printed by June 5th, to bring to California for my interviews. Stressful much?!

Miss Emily Brown kept me sane via Twitter... and I eventually made peace with the fact that I would have zero sun to work with and packed plastic garbage bags and rain boots to romp around with.

All the kids came to the house, got dressed, and the second we arrived at the beach, I turned and saw that car.... and died of happiness. I couldn't stop smiling... that kicked off the rest of the day!

My models were happy, I was happy... sun or no sun, we laughed and screamed and ran around the beach. Throwing Skittles, Twizzlers hanging out of our mouths, splashing each other and pretending to play the guitar. 

Emily, Hayley, Sarah, John, and Austin - you are incredible. To my producer Barb and assistant Jenny - I couldn't have done it without you! And a HUGE thank you to Ed for the beautiful '57 Ford!

Behind the scenes shots HERE!

And although there were trials and tribulations... the kids are alright.

Ariella & Anna // Chasing Waves

I am SO EXCITED to be blogging Ariella & Anna's shoot! Last Friday we jumped in the Peacockmobile and drove up to Hampton Beach. Of course, it was cloudy and freezing. Every other day was sunny and wonderful! Nevertheless, Barb and I weren't calling it off. She had two models as well and an old Station Wagon (lucky bitch!) - and after dropping around $1,000 on wardrobe and props the day before between the two of us, we were pretty eager to shoot.

Miss Ariella, who modeled for the first time at fifteen (yes!) was incredible! What a sweet, soft spoken gal. She got quite an earful on the way there and back between all the cursing and joking and shenanigans that go on during road trips with Barb and I. But she still likes us, so that's a plus! <3 I worked with Anna last year on a big production shoot, and I was absolutely psyched to get to work with her again. She's the sweetest girl, professional model, knows how to bring any shoot to a new level, and is a down to earth humanitarian as well. And we're both 1994 babies, love!

The girls got in their adorable Free People dresses and frolicked around the beach and deserted boardwalk. Total props for the girls for being in very little clothing in very cold weather! They did great. I have nothing but love for these girls... show them some!!! 

Xoxoxoxo


Emily // Wildfire

Hey everyone! I've been back in the 01886 for the past few days, so I set up a shoot with Emily the beautiful. I bought the dress months ago knowing I would want it for a photo shoot. Same story with the blanket... which is actually a tablecloth, from Anthropologie. It was on clearance over the holidays and I ran around the store so excited about my soft adorable new blanket for summer shoots and I took it home and the tag listed the dimensions and washing instructions for the tablecloth. Boy did I feel like an idiot! :) But hey, it looked GREAT!

Anyway, Emily just knocked it out of the park. Jenny assisted for me and I couldn't have done some of my setups without her! She was amazing! Her hair lit up like wildfire in the golden sunset, I was in awe. She knew I was going to dump her in the river at the end, as I asked her to bring water shoes. Well she did it, didn't complain once, and did it again. Trooper with a capital T! She's kind, funny, and I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with her.

Show her some love! Xo

Claire // Young, Wild & Free

It's my pleasure to introduce: Claire. A blonde haired Kansas gal, photographer and fellow photo major, amazingly sassy girl with a great sense of humor and enough teenage attitude to supplement the both of us. 

I'm naming this shoot Young, Wild & Free. That's what I already call my commercial body of work and book, because that's the essence of what comes out of my heart when I shoot with people my own age. This shoot with Miss Claire earns that title as well, and I'm incredibly proud of all of these.

Our drawing teacher had a bouncing baby boy (congrats!) - but instead of canceling class, he got us a substitute. So, we decided not to go to the five hour class for "an extra day to be free and explore your mediums more." Claire and I attended a photography lecture by Jem Southam, here all the way from England (which was fantastic) then headed out the door into the sunshine and paraded around the North End waterfront. Best decision I've ever made. We had a blast, and I got some of the most kickass shots of my life! That's what I call being productive and artistic. Also - if you haven't heard the amazing news that happened yesterday as well, you can find out what it is here!

I love you all so so much.

Ashlee & Curtis // A love story

It's very much my pleasure to introduce Ashlee (aka Shlee) & Curtis (Curt). Residents of the 19th floor (three above mine), these two have had such a romantic little love story. Shlee is silly, fun, a great friend, and just the kind of person you want to be around. And I can't say enough good things about Curt - he's kind, so caring to Shlee, polite & generous, and also funny! The two of them make an awesome MassArt power couple. We spent the morning from dorm to streets, adventuring around Boston to some lovely culinary spots (Subway & Starbucks... that's college folks). It was almost 50 degrees out... such an amazing day to be out and about! And for the record, I didn't almost let them get hit by the E train. They had plenty of room... ;). Everything was just wonderful and I'm beyond excited to share these photographs with you all.

This is what it's like to be young and in love.