Recent Work - A Test with Valerie Landwehr and the importance of creative freedom.

A few Years ago when I tested for agencies like Wilhelmina, Click, Ford and Elite in New York, I learned how important it was to shoot new material all the time.  It’s critical to work freely in order to exercise your creativity, without project constraints.

When I met Valerie Landwehr a few months ago, she immediately struck me as a cross between Christie Brinkley in 1978 and Kate Upton.  This chance meeting immediately took me back to the time when I lived in New York and was actively testing for the agencies.  I called on style guru Kate Bennett of to whip together some wardrobe and Mona Batayeh to handle makeup and hair.  After approximately three days of scouting and prep work, we headed up to a beautiful residence on Indianwood Lake for the shoot.   

I experimented with different lighting styles and gave Kate free range on styling; she’s a wizard, so I knew with very little direction she’d come up with great looks.  When you have talented creatives working along side you, my philosophy is to let them stretch their legs and not over manage a set.  

Kate, Mona, and I touched on vintage fashion from the 70’s (the turbin), some simple, current lifestyle/swimwear and even some east coast prep.  It was a fun and eclectic shoot with no agenda. In the end, I let the location, weather, and surroundings guide me for a change.  It’s easy to get caught up in trying to to control everything on a shoot, but sometimes that can take  away from the wonderfully unpredictable and insecure world of reaction and uncertainty.