Debut Collection Editorial Photoshoot
A year on from my Debut Collection Launch I can’t help but think back to my first photoshoot under my official company name of Danielle Sykes Bridal Designs.
It was Wednesday 31st March 2021 and I remember waking up so nervous and so unsure. Due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions I could only have a team of 6 at the venue, and I hadn’t even met the model or seen her prior to that day for fittings. In fact, I hadn’t had a single fitting with my gowns so it was going to be the first day that I saw an actual person in them. Were they even going to look how I imagined them in my head? I had barely slept, but that was partly because I decided last minute to make a few veils for added drama at the shoot.
Arriving at Carlton Towers in Goole, it was even more magical than I remembered from my first visit. The sky was so clear and bright that morning, little did we know it would turn out to be the one of the hottest days in March on record. I was first to arrive as planned, to greet the photographer Craig Fleming and the hair and make-up artist Julia Jeckell. Then James arrived after collecting the model Georgia Ball from the train station, followed by Jackie from The Flower Shop South Elmsall. Set-up began and everyone was in fabulous high spirits.
James had spent his spare time in the weeks prior to the photoshoot building a large freestanding logo for me. (One of my many bright ideas which he dreads because he knows it means more work for him…. Oops.) He set it up in the first state room and Jackie completed the look with a 4ft candelabra floral arrangement. As always with Jackie, I gave her just one criteria… make it big! I am defiantly a more is more kind of girl. I also tasked her with another magnificent idea of mine, something I had seen somewhere a long time ago and hadn’t seen anything like it since… the arched bouquet. Jackie and I have known each other for over a decade, she actually gave me my first job as a 14 year old, and always manages to capture my desired look based solely from my ramblings.
For hair and make-up I wanted a soft glam look with beautiful waves to perfectly frame the glorious Hestia crown and earrings I had on loan from Victoria at Caped and Crowned. Julia arrived armed with lots of luscious lashes for me to choose from, (much to Craigs dismay… apparently photographers hate fake eyelashes… who knew?) and had the most perfect canvas in Georgia. A few hours later Georgia was ready to try on the first gown of my Debut Collection... Gigi. Finally seeing my gowns on someone all glammed up like a bride, was truly an emotional and breathtaking moment that I will never forget.
After battling against the heat all morning we stopped for lunch so we could all cool down. Ever the professionals, Craig and Georgia didn't truly take a break as it ended up being an impromptu mini-shoot resulting in one of my favourite photographs from the whole day.
The afternoon was even busier than the morning but my team were troopers in the glorious weather. Flowers wilted, hair deflated and we were all sweating buckets while breaking our daily step-count targets. Georgia was a ball of fun the whole day and bounced off Craig brilliantly creating some magical moments. James was invaluable to both myself and Craig, he helped arrange different 'scenes', moved equipment and props, took behind the scenes photographs and made me stop and breath when I needed to.
Photoshoots are often quite stressful, particularly for new collections when you have a lot of gowns to get through, and while my collection is relatively small, managing the large skirts takes longer than you might think. I am so grateful that we were able to achieve everything both I and the photographer wanted to, including the all important lookbook shots. (Standard front and back shots of the gowns.) It is the editorial edgy shots that really excite me and the exact reason why I chose Craig as my photographer.
Everyone enjoyed the day so much and I will cherish the memories forever.
Want to see the finished results? Click the link below and be sure to get in touch to let me know what you think of my very first collection editorial photoshoot.
To find out more about my incredible photoshoot team click on the links below.