For the last instalment of my Summer Table I want to share how I prepared. A large part of me feeling more confident in my photography and styling is all down to the planning and preparation. An exercise that I spent my college years doing was creating moodboards, whilst I regularly pull boards together on a whim with stuff I have have close by as a creative excerise, using them to prep a project has enabled me to see how I want a shoot to develop with clarity rather than closing my eyes and hoping for the best!
Moodboarding with real “things” whether they be magazine tears, objects, books or fabric swatches means that the final result is multi-layered and unique rather than relying on the algorithms of Pinterest and Instagram to produce almost identical images for “inspiration”. Whilst they definitely have a place, I’ve spent many (maybe too many?!) hours on both these apps I find their perfect squareness can get into my head. For me the “journey” of finding what ignites my inspiration and having contact with physical items means I feel so much more connected to the final images and they become a true representation of the ideas and concepts I have in my head which in turn makes me stand behind them proud and with a confidence to say this is “me!”
Before shoots, I pull images and items that conjure up a feeling or have a composition, colour combination or an element that I want to include in my styling and photography. I start to lay everything out on the floor and layer and move things around until I am happy with everything. I then take a simple snap on my phone to serve as a reminder on the day and gather all the props in a big basket and write a list of anything I need to make/do. When it comes to shooting as I tend to work from my house, I work out where I will take the photos and when the best light is in that space. From there its a simple case of organising childcare (!) and letting my eyes and instincts take over. Sometimes the final images aren’t exactly as I imagine them but they always contain the elements of my original inspiration.
If you’re not planning a photoshoot this weekend, no me neither! Moodboarding is a great way of taking time out for yourself and connecting visually with what you love. I often make them at the beginning of a new season when I want to visualise how my days will look and feel. I pull recipes and styling ideas for my home, colours I might want to add to my wardrobe or even plants to add to my garden. They are such a great activity to undertake, I’ve totally fallen back in love with them, have a great weekend. x
You can find the rest of my Summer Table posts below.