Photoshoot with Kingmond Young Photography

Exciting developments at Compass Rose Design! Several months ago at the SF RAW artist showcase, I met the founder of Kingmond Young Photography. He and Johnny also hit it off and it was a great honor when Kingmond offered to do a test shoot with our jewelry. Until meeting Kingmond, the world of high fashion photography felt very far away.  Kingmond and his wife, Mary, own a gallery space at 416 Cortland in San Francisco. Their block is a charming mix of local cafes and small shops including 331 Cortland, home to El Porteño Empanadas, ICHI Lucky Cat Sushi, Paulie's Pickling, Wholesome Bakery, Bernal Cutlery, and Della Terra Organics a knife-sharpening-piroshki-natural spice-pickled herring combination of businesses.
Needless to say, this foray into high-fashion photography was my first, and it was nothing short of delightful. Kingmond selected the perfect model, Lauren Robinson, sort of a modern Audrey Hepburn with both elegance and edge, as well as a talented hair and makeup stylist, Lili Surplus.  

We each came prepared with the tools of our trade. Here's where I can confess that the episodes of the Rachel Zoe Project I've watched were the only training I had on how to prepare for a photoshoot. Kingmond had mentioned the idea of "jewelry as clothing" - so I allowed myself several weeks to develop some designs that accentuated the essence of Compass Rose Design.
Lili was an expert - totally prepared with what seemed to be a full salon in her expandable cases. 
Because we didn't have an official wardrobe stylist, we all collaborated on the clothing choices and styling. The fluidity of the collaborative creative process was exhilarating.  Kingmond had strong visions set forth like a baseline, to which ideas and spontaneous adaptations were added like so many notes and rhythms combining into something larger than the four of us.
Lili has worked extensively in fashion and television, and it showed. She was amazing and versatile and truly skilled at translating the creative concepts of the photographer into physical reality.
It was an honor to watch Kingmond work - constantly adjusting lights and angles and bodies to bring life to the ideas. And he was also happy to listen to input and develop concepts out of the jewelry pieces we had to work with.  He is an artist with true vision. And his wife, Mary, is amazingly kind, bringing us sandwiches and snacks at the perfect time - which was before we all got tired.
The model, Lauren, was a great example of the skill, focus and flexibility - both physical and emotional - required to model. She was tolerant of the continual poking and prodding required.
This shot emerged through an evolution of ideas, and somehow we ended up at Black Madonna, Spanish Lace, Locks, Keys, Secrets and Gold - I love it.

It was a lot of hours to do all 5 looks, but we had fun, particularly when Lauren put on the boxing gloves.

We captured the elegant power of a Greek Goddess of the 21st century with this design made with antique escutcheon keyholes and Victorian mourning drop buttons. I'm excited to see the shots Kingmond got of this look. The gold silk wrap was perfect.

I was amazed by the versatility that was achievable through wardrobe and makeup - Lili worked magic with constant hair and makeup modification and clever use of bobby-pins when needed.

 It was constant, live-action styling - making sure each strand of hair and chain was in place.

Kingmonds work was incredibly physical and interactive - the process was truly amazing to behold.

Photographer: Kingmond Young; Model: Lauren Robinson; Makeup & Hair: Lily Surplus
Here is one of the first images from Kingmond to come out the shot. I LOVE IT.

I want to thank Kingmond, Lauren, Lili and Mary from the bottom of my heart for contributing their talents.  It was profoundly moving for me to see the essence and energy of my designs carried into another dimension by the gifts of these talented people. To see the work of my own ideas and hands surrendered to the artistic talents of these three individuals has resulted in nothing short of magic.

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July 29 , 2012 Santa Rosa, Ca. 

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August 18 & 19, 2012
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