Behind the Scenes: FaceTime Photoshoot
Behind the Scenes:
Our FaceTime Photoshoots
While we've been staying home in recent months, our favorite bridal looks have been traveling from coast to coast! In New York and Los Angeles, models Erica, Nathalia, and Lauren welcomed our gowns into their homes for a series of long-distance photoshoots, captured via FaceTime by photographer Arturo Torres. To learn how these innovative images came to life, we chatted with Arturo about collaboration, connection, and bridging distances through creativity.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your work?
A: “I'm a first-generation Mexican American photographer based on the West Coast. I grew up living between Mexico and Northern California. I started taking photos as a teen, and I'm currently focused on shooting fashion, editorial, and commercial. Oh, and connecting via FaceTime.”
Q: What inspired you to start doing FaceTime photoshoots?
A: “On about day seven of quarantine, I started reaching out to other creatives who were stuck at home, unable to work but still wanting to create. I realized that I had the tools necessary to create some original work with my friends, internet, an iPad, and a camera. From there, it kind of snowballed into a ‘thing.’”
Q: What was your process for the BHLDN shoots?
A: “Step one: plan the looks and shots. Step two: connect on FaceTime and shoot! Pretty simple, but I was lucky to work with some very talented humans. They acted as models, stylists, and hair/makeup. I had Erica, Nathalia, and Lauren walk me around their homes, so we could pick backdrops together. I directed how the shot would be framed and what needed to move in the background, and we collaborated on ideas for props, chairs, etc. I give them a ton of credit for being so open-minded and willing to collaborate.”
Q: Are there any challenges unique to shooting via FaceTime?
A: “The biggest challenge is the wi-fi connection. We needed a solid connection for these to work. After that's figured out, it's like a normal shoot. I use my real camera so everyone can hear the clicks and it has a real flow.”
Q: How do you find ways to connect with your subjects from a distance?
A: “Relating to the situation and being artists in the same industry definitely helps to make a connection. We were all in the same boat—coast to coast, worldwide. Joking around and laughing at the fact that we're shooting via FaceTime is also a great icebreaker.”
Q: How did you edit these images?
A: “My editing process for these shoots evolved daily during the first weeks of the stay-at-home era. I put my own unique artwork on some of the images and color grade them as though it's an IRL shoot.”
Q: What was the most fun part of this project? The most surprising?
A: “The best part was making new friends, East Coast and West Coast. I was pleasantly surprised that the models were up for the creative challenge, too—making suggestions and playing off each other with ideas. Normally, there can be a huge team of people on set making decisions, so bringing it down to just the model and me was refreshing. It was great to hear that everyone enjoyed the experience of getting back to normal, or as close as we could get at the time.”
“I give Erica, Nathalia, and Lauren a ton of credit for being so open-minded and willing to collaborate.”