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Working With My Muses

BLCKBTS FASHION & ART EVENT AT JOAN SHEPP

Shannah Warwick is inspired by an artist, a space, and a model in her upcoming editorial shoot!

This is the first time I’ve ever been so directly influenced by an artist, space, and model; I’ve had a true experience of working with my muses! It is a really intense way of working, especially when you realize to what extent you have been subconsciously inspired.

The Artist and The Space:

Adam Wallacavage. Ive known him the longest; we met through an interesting connection to a piece that I’ve collected, but thats a story for another day. I knew him before I knew his art and I knew his art before I knew his home. I remember having a conversation with him about his home and what stood out to me were his influences and his humor. His collections are kind of silly and whacky but never evil or really dark. I liked the way he talked about creating elaborate gifts for his family members and not really waiting for a specific occasion so much as waiting for a specific thought or idea for a present for that specific person.
     I think I mostly really like the way he relates to his work and how his beautiful sculpted lighting pieces grew out of a desire to create something beautiful and ornate for his home. I think that’s such a personal way to come to an artistic expression and the look that he’s known for. I just love the connection between his home and his work. I feel so honored that he allowed me to create an entire collection inspired and based upon this person that lives in this space.

The Model:

Cory Wade. It’s always been Cory Wade. My photographer Stevie Chris sent me countless photos of other models, and I even searched over and over for other models, but it just had to be Cory. I wanted an androgynous figure that could stand his own in a highly ornate environment. I watched Cory’s music videos to see how he moved. I wanted to really watch how he took on emotion, like from his own artistic expression, and I was impressed in the way that he can command attention in a room. He’s larger then life, he can model his ass off on anything, and he took on a character exactly how I envisioned. He’s been my muse since the moment this project started to take life.

I’ve never really worked this way before, having a physical muse before the collection was designed, and it’s had it’s challenges. Specifically adding a new element to the BlckBts line: leather. I knew enough about leather to be able to know how it would work in some pieces but I really had to rely on an expert, Cassie Jones of Cusp Leather, to help me understand its limitations and how to best showcase the beauty of this new detail. Cassie was able to look at my pieces and listen to my ideas, see my sort of hatched out concepts for each piece and help me figure out what would work, would not work, and even suggestions for a better way to use the leather. The lesson being: trust the experts, trust your team, because you went to great lengths to chose them.

The Team:

And I’ll end with another huge amount of gratitude for the rest of my team. Stevie Chris, my photographer, who can see my vision through pinterest boards and texts at all hours of the day.  JamieLeigh MUA who also decodes the same pinterest boards and rambling texts into makeup magic. And Dena who came on as not only the communication expert, as she has been for years with me, but also the project manager:  this project, like my muses, is a bit larger then life (or at least a bit larger then anything Ive attempted before!), Dena was really able to give Cory direction during the shoot that I simply wasn’t able to do:  my words tend to escape me during shoots, when everything is finally being released from my minds eye into reality right before me. It’s such a powerful emotion and I am so grateful to have not only a friend but a true professional be able to keep everything on point!

Wow! just wow to this whole thing!  And to my muses and my team, a resounding THANK YOU!

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