Josh Burns (headshot)

Retro Hollywood Portrait

Admittedly, I’m old school when it comes to glamour.  I love the Golden Age of  Hollwood and I’m always looking for new ways to  recreate the excitement of those publicity stills shot by photographers like George Hurrell, that could catapult the career of a young actor or starlet.   Greta Garbo, Gloria Swanson, Joan Crawford, Marlene Dietrich, and many others owe a great part of their star power to the photographers that transformed them into goddesses,  creating  a lasting mystique that translated into — BOX OFFICE!

These masters defined glamour in ways that still keep our eyes riveted to magazines and remain my wells of creative inspiration.  I never get tired of looking at images from this era.


Of course, glamour didn’t stop with the women.  Clark Gable, Cary Grant, James Cagney and Humphrey Bogart benefitted  just as much from the Hollywood publicity machine.

For this shoot, I wanted to create a headshot that had  a vintage Hollywood look – a publicity still; something that looks like it might have been printed on aged paper decades ago.

Josh Burns, an up and coming actor, had no trouble nailing the character I was looking for.  He bears a slight resemblance to Joaquin Phoenix, intense and provocative but with the softness of a Montgomery Clift.

I used a fairly common lighting setup among portrait photographers, namely a large softbox as a primary light source just above the subject, a silver reflector placed under the chin and two black  V-flats positioned on either side of the model, adjusted on the fly.

Hair & Makeup: Admin Rivero.  Shot at Starr Street Studios, Bushwick, Brooklyn.

Harajuku Girl

Celebrating Eclecticism, Harajuku-style!

Harajuku, a neighborhood in the Shibuya section of Tokyo is famous for being the birthplace of an aesthetic that has become a worldwide phenomena, a trend that highlights creativity, individuality, brilliant use of colors and emphasis on eclecticism.  In short, Harajuku fashion is a mesh of many styles.


Harajuku Girl 3

model: Lindsay King stylist: Jessica Bean

“She’s So Unusual,” Cyndi Lauper’s classic debut comes to mind as an example.  Her reign at the top of the charts in the 1980s came at a time when bands like Duran Duran and Culture Club were pushing the visuals as much as the music.

Harajuku Girl 4

model: Kristine Dupuis in Rainbow Pony Swimwear

More recently, pop acts like Nicki Minaj and Gwen Stefani have incorporated (and rocked)  the look.  Stefani even features a group of dancers named, The Harajuku Girls in her live shows and music videos.

Bright colors, bold combinations and unconventional uses of fabrics are the order of business.  Plastic, metal, vinyl — it’s all here!

Big thanks to all the models and, of course, stylist extraordinaire, Jessica Bean of Industry Chains for her amazing creativity.

Harajuku Girl 2

model: Cortnie Pedraza