We shot Katherine Evelyn Anita "Katie" Cassidy today (Sunday, April 6, 2014). She's on that CW show called Arrow. She's also the daughter of David Cassidy the 70s star from the Partridge Family.
Photographer Marc Baptiste was in from New York for a photo contest we judged together, so i set up for him to shoot Katie on the rooftop of the Luxe Hotel on Rodeo Drive. It all came together in our usual Genlux fashion—quickly and serendipitously. Quixote Studios was kind enough to deliver some staging to the rooftop so we could lift Katie up above the level of the wall that surrounds the patio of the hotel. Then, this morning I had this thought to make it look super summery by adding a lawn—so I zipped over to Home Depot and loaded up my car with 64 square feet of sod. You see the result below. That white building directly behind her is the CHANEL boutique on Rodeo and Brighton and those dots on the building are all CHANEL logos. (Okay, when was the last time you saw Home Depot and CHANEL in the same paragraph).
We had a late start. Katie just flew in from Vancouver this morning for the shoot. so our call time was 11:30. (We usually like to start by 9) Being as she needed to be hard-out at 5 to get back on her plane to Vancouver (whew!) we were going to be hard-pressed to get a full fashion story. Especially since Marc called me early this morning to let me know that the light was going to be too harsh to shoot from about noon to 3. Really? Hmmm. So I grabbed a ladder from my garage, went in the backyard and cut down three huge palm branches that we then could use to "cut" the light. It worked! Gives a cool summery vibe while allowing us to shoot mid-day light! And much easier to transport than a 12-by scrim and high-rollers. So now you want to hear about some drama, right?
Remember, our call time was 11:30, so we all knew we had to get shakin' as soon as everyone arrived. Ashleigh Louer from The Wall Group (she did that brilliant bowling alley shoot—Alley of the Dolls with us last year) was the first to arrive and got Katie going in makeup as Elisa Wishan with The Rex Agency immediately started her manicure. Then, I'm not sure why it hadn't hit me before, but a whole hour went by before I realized that Robert Steinken our hair stylist was not on set. And he's ALWAYS on time. His agent Susanna Burke at CloutierRemix HAD confirmed "receipt" of call sheet on Friday—something I always request of the artists and agents—so I was sure 'all was good.' So anyway, I don't say a thing, I just casually walk out of the hotel space and go outside to call Robert on his cell—THERE'S NO ANSWER! I call Cloutier to get their "emergency" phone number from their answering machine. I call it. It goes nowhere. Not even connected. ARE YOU KIDDING? So then, without showing worry because I always know things are meant to be, I walk back in and I guess everyone knew what was happening because Katie was on the phone to her hair girl and hands me the phone. I give her the info and ask that she gets down as soon as possible. She was there in less than 30 minutes and she was FANTASTIC! Everything is meant to be. It's hard to understand in the moment why seemingly "bad" things are happening, but have faith. Everything is going to work out fine. At around 2 I get a call from a VERY apologetic Robert Steinken who said he thought the shoot was not til tomorrow! Listen, if Robert wasn't the best, I'd place him on my blacklist.
Now, during this time, a truly miraculous thing is happening. The publicist, who I'm working with for the first time, is NOT freaking out. She's being calm. Not yelling. Not getting in my face. Not being a B. She is being cool. She is being calm. She is letting the creative process play out in a positive way. AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHY THINGS WORKED OUT SO QUICKLY!! Sure, she was concerned, but she's mature enough to know that getting negative on us is not going to help solve anything. Next to Brad Cafarelli, who is also as chill as can be on set, this girl is my new favorite pr person! Kimberly Simone with BWR.
So by 2:00 we started rolling. The fashion was awesome. That's Katie in a Valentino coat in the shot above. Our stylist who pulled a brilliant "strong solid graphic color" story was Holly Copeland with The Rex Agency. Talk about a hard worker. She had a shoot yesterday. Has our shoot today and one tomorrow. Crazy! Anyway, Katie worked so well that we finished by 4:00. AND we stopped to have lunch. I'm not quite sure how that all works but sometimes during our shoots TIME STANDS STILL. We can be shooting and I'll look at the time, and it's like it hasn't moved. I think God protects us in some kind of creative bubble, where time does not matter. He's good like that.