The Birth of Luxe Material & BTS Secrets
When I first started this blog, Luxe Material, I did not know and still do not know how it works. No one actually talks about what goes into the outfit pictures or how to work with brands. Before even considering starting up my blog, I had already chosen my blog name years ago. I had a website developed already but I never used it. It was sitting there, just collecting dust.
PSSST! There are exclusive photos in this post! ;)
Before releasing Luxe Material, I constantly researched any articles about blogging. The hardships and creating content for the viewers. I knew that I wanted to start a fashion blog. I didn't know why it took me so long. Throughout my teenage years, I watched hundreds and hundreds of beauty, fashion and lifestyle videos. I always wished to either create a youtube or blog for fashion and beauty.
However, every time I tried to record a video...it was either the lighting, camera or how I was unsatisfied with the whole content. I had horrible equipment and no experience on video content. I knew that I had some type of ambition and hunger for the fashion world. I just didn't know what platform or style I wanted to showcase for everyone to see.
I launched a collaborative channel back in high school with one of my good friends, who I am still friends with to this day! We shot some outfit lookbooks and photos, just sporadically throughout the years. We were always doing photo shoots, either for her portfolio or just for fun. It was and still is one of our favorite things to do. She is usually the photographer and I usually model. We do reverse the roles, sometimes!
That amazing friend is Jeannine, who have shoot pictures of me for a whopping 4 years! She has always been so open and created some amazing ideas for our photo shoots. Our favorite past time is to have a coffee and brainstorm some photoshoot ideas. We do have planned photoshoots but we also have impromptu ones as well.
With the outfit lookbooks that Jeannine and I shot, it was a great way to gather experience. Editing the lookbooks in Final Cut Pro showed how intensely people are with their editing. I loved having to edit a fashion lookbook and posting it onto Youtube for everyone to see. We both had an amazing time shooting these and we still have fun.
However, as much as people see the photos or videos of the outfits...they do not know what goes into making it happen.
Here is what goes on for shooting my outfit pictures:
Since I currently am based in New York City, I have a vast variety of different backgrounds that I can use for my blog. However, getting to these places are always a logistical blueprint to figure out. For the majority of the posts, the locations have always been figured out before the actual shoot date. It all varies on what the outfit is categorized as.
If the outfit is a little bit edgier like It's Casual 004, we need a more industrial or dark background. If the outfit is a little bit more girly like H&M // Suede 003, we need a more soft, casual or romantic background.
However, some of the blog posts have been very impromptu with the backgrounds. Either when I am walking with a friend or my photographer(s), we might see photo locations that have the potential be great for a picture. We either take test shots or even the actual outfit photos right there! Like I said, it varies.
You might see some changes in the scenery in outfit posts or you might not. That all depends if or when I am with my POFT (Photographer of the Day) and what type of transportation we use. The majority of the time is by car. We park the car and walk to our destination.
3. Outfit/Accessory Changes
This is what makes the photos (for me at least) - heels! No one really talks about this...but I can guarantee this! No one actually wears those ridiculous heels. Having a car as a mode of transportation is amazing! It's an on-the-go closet. I store my heels that I need for the shoot in the car and switch out my flats when I get to the destination. Either I switch it out in the car or I bring it with me in a tote bag. Sometimes either the destination has a lot of rocks or the shoes are uncomfortable, bloggers always carry their flats with them. It's their saving grace.
So...I switch my flats for my heels. Then I take the shots that I need and then switch my heels back with flats. And in the actual pictures, that tote bag that I carry my shoes in, is on the side! It's never shown in the pictures. Obviously, we need to show our readers the pictures that show off the outfit without showing what goes into it.
4. Finding a POTD
It can sometimes be a little hard shooting an outfit for a blog per week. Some fashion bloggers even shoot 4 outfits a week! That is very hard! Either bloggers will ask their friends, parents, other fashion bloggers/photographers and even themselves to shoot an outfit picture! Sometimes it is hard asking friends to shoot an outfit photo for you, every week.
It might seem like you only want to hang out with your friends just for them to take a photo. But when you are starting out being a fashion blogger...you ask anyone and everyone. Don't apologize for that. Publishing content is something that you need to do constantly. Without publishing anything, you will fall into obscurity.
I plan a day during the week to shoot an outfit post. That could either be one week or two days before the actual blog goes live. I do ask friends if they can be my POTD and make sure that we both are on the same page. If you ask a friend to be your photographer, you need confirmation from them to know that they will your default photographer.
Overall, it's a lot of work but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. Usually, I lose interest in something very quickly and I move onto something else. With this blog, I have not lost interest or passion. It's something that I genuinely enjoy doing and I'm loving. So, here's to the upcoming months!