Collab: Kachia Lee Designs

I know I'm behind on blogging but at least I'm working on them!! Most of them are saved as drafts until I finish editing so don't fear! They're coming!! Ok, so the shoot with Kachia Lee Designs happened because during the school year I was tagged to photograph her designs during a fashion design. Sadly, I wasn't able to since to help because at the same time I was focusing on studying for finals and creating content for work. Fast forward, the moment school was over or getting over (basically when I finished studying for finals), I reached out to her to work together.

Although I was tagged to work with her, contacting her personally was nerve-wracking and felt like finals all over again. I probably revised my message a dozen time. BUT she was such a sweetheart and made my anxiety levels normal again.

 Model: Mihoko Xiong Dress: Kachia Lee Designs Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang Assistant: Yer Vang Location: Sister's back yard Jewelry from Hmong ABC

Model: Mihoko Xiong
Dress: Kachia Lee Designs
Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang
Assistant: Yer Vang
Location: Sister's back yard
Jewelry from Hmong ABC

We met up a week or so after discussing which piece I wanted to photograph. After talking to Kachia about her design and what came to her as she was creating this piece, I knew that having the model in nature would work out nicely as that was also her vision for the piece.

Since a lot of my work falls into the Fine Arts category, I usually pre-warn those who I work/collaborate with about my style (if they didn't take a look at them themselves already) so I'm super happy whenever designers are willing to work with me knowing that the final results won't always be super editorial looking.

 Model: Mihoko Xiong Dress: Kachia Lee Designs Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang Assistant: Yer Vang Location: Sister's back yard Jewelry from Hmong ABC

Model: Mihoko Xiong
Dress: Kachia Lee Designs
Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang
Assistant: Yer Vang
Location: Sister's back yard
Jewelry from Hmong ABC

I went to my niece and asked her to model for me (as I was still too nervous to contact models to work with me) and I had my sister assist with the smoke grenade (which ended up being too close to the model and burning small holes into the design - yes, I felt terrible and I still feel terrible as I'm writing this because it could've been avoided had I been more clear to my assistant). I grabbed some jewelry from my sister's store and then my friend wanted to come along and second shoot so this was a close knit shoot and it turned out really quick and fun. Thankfully it was a cloudy day so we didn't have to worry about sharp shadows, we were worried it was going to pour but it didn't, so we got lucky. 

 Model: Mihoko Xiong Dress: Kachia Lee Designs Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang Assistant: Yer Vang Location: Sister's back yard

Model: Mihoko Xiong
Dress: Kachia Lee Designs
Second Shooter: Touchaingkong Yang
Assistant: Yer Vang
Location: Sister's back yard

I'm so grateful and thankful that Kachia Lee is such a sweetheart. I felt like I failed on my first collaboration since I burnt little holes into the green and pink tulle and I pretty much told myself I should never collaborate again if I'm just going to ruin beautiful designs but she told me everything was fine. Of course it didn't make me feel incredibly good, it just lessened the blow I was putting at myself. In return for screwing up on that portion, I wanted to provide her with the best photos. 

So, only let the assistant handle what they can handle. I was so used to my other sisters handling the smoke grenades and being pros with it that I thought my sister would be able to pull it off too. Not only that, give more clear and precise instructions to avoid hurting the model and the design she is wearing.

Thank you again Kachia Lee for allowing me to photograph your piece and forgiving me for pretty much ruining one of your first designs. I AM SO INCREDIBLY SORRY STILL!!!