An Indie Biz: Making a Look Book

Pierogi Picnic Look Book shoot

This past Saturday I embarked on my first look book adventure!

Gathering together a group of talented creatives and the Pierogi Picnic modeling gang, we orchestrated a fun-filled shoot in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood. With loads of brightly colored designs and props in hand – we snapped and shot hundreds of photos to show off the latest Pierogi Picnic creations – orchestrating an urban picnic in one of the most vibrant and eclectic neighborhoods in Chicago.

Pierogi Picnic look book teaser

Now that the actual shoot date is behind us, all that’s left to do is sift through the shots and do some fine tuning! We’ll keep you posted on when the final product is ready for it’s debut to the world. But in the meantime – here’s a peek into the planning that went into making the shoot a success.

Collaboration: One of the best decisions I could have made when planning this look book was reaching out for like-minded collaborators. Rather than doing the hair, makeup and photography myself – I entrusted the experts – those who make this their full-time craft. Recruiting the talents of photographer Jill Hornok, makeup artist Percis Maddela, and hair guru Shannon Finch, we were able to divide and conquer each task in a way that made for a seamless day.

Gathering Inspiration: One of my favorite parts of planning any kind of large-scale creative project is seeking out inspiration. Combing through my favorite blogs, magazines and Pinterest boards, I was able to compile a collection of images that would help my collaborators envision the mood and look of the project. From pinning neon colored lip shades to romantic up-dos, giving the team a look into my mind via digital scrap-booking ensured we were all on the same page well ahead of our actual project date.

Visual Planning: Beyond scoping out inspirations – one of the most important parts of planning our look book was designing each scene of the shoot beforehand. We had three locations scouted which would require three outfit changes. Weeks in advance I meticulously styled each model’s clothing so that the look and feel of the project complimented each outfit. Once we had each piece of clothing assigned we could move on to the remaining visual elements for the project. I knew I wanted bright bursting florals, bubbles, confections, picnic blankets, baskets and pillows to create a genuine picnic in the city feel. Purchasing props, creating mock set-ups and photographing them in advance, allowed for easier set-up once we were on location. Having pictures with specific instructions also made it easy for everyone to pitch in and help us get each scene prepped quickly – allowing for more time to snap pics.

Celebrating: There’s nothing quite as satisfying as celebrating the completion of a big undertaking – like the making of a look book. So in true Pierogi Picnic style we held an indoor picnic following the shoot. With cupcakes, tea sandwiches  coffee and macaroons, having a celebratory luncheon allowed us to unwind from the fast pace of the shoot and settle in to enjoy the remainder of our Memorial Day weekends.

Have you ever undertaken a big project like designing a look book? How did you plan its creation in advance? Share your tips in the comments below!

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