Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Remember When . . . We Had a Photo Shoot?

This isn't exactly a cover design post, since the covers haven't been finalized yet. But this past weekend we had a photo shoot for an upcoming WhiteFire series, and it was so much fun that I thought I'd post a bit about it, and get y'all looking forward to when I do post about the cover design. ;-)
WhiteFire recently had the joy of signing a fresh young author to a 3-book deal. I first met Rachelle Rea on Go Teen Writers, quite a few years ago when the blog was first starting up. She's been a regular member there over the years, and soon stood out as a sweetheart. One with talent. She just graduated from college last spring, and already she's building a career as a freelance editor and is known for her tagline, "Inspiring Daring."

Her Steadfast Love series takes place in the 1560s, focusing on a Catholic heroine caught in the middle of the riots and slaughtering of Catholics by Protestants in Holland, known as the Iconoclastic Fury. A rescuer arrives to sweep her back to her home in England...but not the rescuer she would have hoped for. No, the man who shows up is the very one who murdered her parents. She saw him standing over their bodies. So how is she to entrust her safety to him--but what choice does she have?

The heroine, Gwyn, is tall and willowy, blond, beautiful. So naturally, when stock photo sites fail me and I realize we're going to have to do this one ourselves, I turn to my gorgeous, willowy, blond niece, Jayna. Happily, Jayna is active in theater and always eager to play dress up, so she readily agreed to pose for me. Yay!

The next step was costuming. The last couple times we had a photo shoot, we actually commissioned the dresses to be made by an amazing young seamstress--another girl I met through Go Teen Writers, LOL. But I knew I'd need three costumes (one for each book in the series), and that didn't seem like the answer this time. So I instead contacted all the costume rental places I could find who were remotely close to my hometown.

I was kinda blown away by how that all worked out. My daughter was in a parade at our mall last week and had to go in for costuming...and it happens that the same shop I'd contacted in a town 1.5 hours away was the one doing those costumes, too. So I took Jayna to be measured at the same time as Xoe, and they brought the gowns with them to the parade. How perfect was that?

Now, fashions in the 1560s were pretty diverse. The gowns we chose reflect three of the very-different styles that a lady of Gwyn's station would have worn, depending on the situation. In book 1, The Sound of Diamonds, she's on the run---starting at a convent, where she wouldn't have been decked out in court regalia. So for that one, we chose a beautiful blue velvet gown with a cape.
And we needed a "diamond" rosary necklace. Not that it deserves those quotes in the book, but I sure wasn't shelling out the gazillion dollars a real one cost. ;-) So for the purposes of a photo shoot, we settled for Ye Olde Fakes.

Our next dress for The Sound of Silver was more in court styles. A burgundy velvet with a pop-up collar, this one is regal and ended up photographing so very well!
And finally, a dress for The Sound of Emeralds. Naturally, this one had to be green. =)
Of course, dresses weren't enough. We needed a location. In the past, all our photo shoots have been in front of a blank screen, and then I put in a background photo to suit the setting. But in this case, I thought we'd try actually shooting with an appropriate backdrop. Of course, Cumberland, Maryland isn't exactly bursting with Renaissance architecture.

But we do have one location that popped to mind--a church. I emailed them to ask about using the exterior of their building as our location, and they quite happily agreed. So we did the shoot at Emmanuel Episcopal, and it was absolutely gorgeous.
So there you get a glimpse of our costuming, set, and photography (photos are all by my fabulous aunt, Pam Mulligan). What you probably can't tell from the abundant sunshine is that it was barely 40 degrees. Poor Jayna's nose was getting red by the end of the shoot, LOL.

We had a fun time--though doing costume changes in a minivan is very daring. Rachelle should be proud. ;-) And the results were simply stunning. Can't wait to share the cover process with you!

10 comments:

  1. I am SO excited!! What a fun photo shoot! Totally can't wait to see the final cover! :D

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    1. It was a lot of fun! And it's so awesome to have all these awesome photos to choose from. =)

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  2. Can't wait for these books. :) Rachelle is a favorite of mine.

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    1. We're so glad we get to work with her! =)

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  3. How much fun! Eager to see the final product.

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  4. Roseanna, you rock. This was so much fun to read!

    Natasha, that's sweet!

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  5. Rachelle is lovely and I'm so excited for her, about her book and now about her covers too. What gorgeous pictures! I'm looking forward to seeing the cover someday! :)

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    1. Cover reveal will be on January 13! Mark your calendars! I'll be doing a cover creation post on Go Teen Writers, and Rachelle is organizing a reveal tour to coincide. =)

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  6. I'm so happy to hear of Rachelle's books! The costumes and photo setup sounds wonderful. I simply can't wait for her published books to appear!

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