We had done it. February consisted of a successful first meetup, with new creative pals in our network. For March I mimicked my original meetup format pretty closely. The plan was to meet up at Cartel coffee in Tempe and wander the iconic maple-ash neighborhood.
Our model this time round was Anna Nygren, a soul sister of mine, as well as an astounding model and graphic designer. I hadn’t managed to coordinate with Composite Boutique as well so after snagging a few jackets to use as staple pieces or accents, Anna and I sent several texts and photos back and forth reviewing her personal wardrobe. I was so excited for her to meet the whole gang.
Speaking of the gang, the group compiled for round two of the QuadShot meetup (other than myself and Anna) was Eric Daniels, Oscar Griffin, and Ashley Baker. What I didn’t tell you in the last blog is that not only is Ashley a model AND a dancer…but she’s also a k i c k a s s photographer. I mean talk about an all around killer.
Our energy was bubbling in Cartel while we waited for Anna to change into the first look. Some kids who only a month ago were strangers, now we were just excited to jump straight into collaborating. Anna glided through the coffee shop towards us, miniature rolling suitcase trailing behind her, ready to be a model on the go. Our energy went from bubbling to over-flowing very quickly as our chatter and laughter followed us out the coffee lab’s metal doors.
It was March, so thankfully rather than having a melting az sun we actually had some lovely greenery to work with. If you aren’t familiar with the maple-ash neighborhood, it’s a charming historical neighborhood located in the heart of tempe. Every house is different and fun and the residents are typically friendly to wanderers and/or kids with cameras.
Anna’s first look was a ridiculously fun pale pink tulle skirt with a striped starchy blouse and one of our picks from Composite, an 80s denim jacket. Right near some train tracks there was a stark red and yellow wall fencing in some apartments. I think it was Oscar that first suggested we stopped there and just as we were about to start snapping away, Eric took off his sunglasses and handed them to Anna, it was just the rose-colored detail we were missing. Immediately we were all in our groove. Watching Anna and Ashley work together was particularly special for me. They have such similar contagious energies and their ideas for posing and movement bounced off each other so brilliantly. Some of my favorite shots I have to credit entirely to them.
It felt like christmas day, halloween, and my birthday all wrapped up into one. We had so. much. fun. We were experimenting with some prisms I had just gotten off amazon, challenged each other to timed shoots, and even had some fun taking portraits of one another while one photographer was with the model.
Somewhere along the third outfit Eric started getting a bit fidgety. He was feeling weird and tingly, my first question was… ‘Eric did you maybe smoke something before the meetup?’ I was wrong – the problem was that ERIC HAD NEVER HAD COFFEE BEFORE. Somehow during the first meetup all of us had failed to notice that every one of us had coffee while he did not. So at Cartel he decided to get ballsy and order a dirty chai for the first time. I have to say it was actually quite the honor to be present the very first time Eric ever experienced a coffee high. Since then it has been a running joke with the group, always watching out for Eric and his caffeine intake.
A few hours went by, we had shot three different looks, the sun was getting to us – only a little bit – and it was time to wrap it up.