Posts Tagged 'Photographer'

March 3, 2011

The March Issue of Metro Magazine is FINALLY on news stands and I’ve been super excited to see the final product of a fashion piece I photographed for the magazine a couple of months ago! For this spread, we collaborated with an illustrator to bring in a little artistic flare to the project, which is the first time I have ever done this! It was so hard to hand over images, not knowing what they would turn out like! Our goal was to create a fashion editorial that showed great style, yet was light hearted and a TON of fun! Think well-dressed-men-being-boys. Lets face it, every single guy I have ever met has a boyhood dream of playing with guns! Shooting this spread was so much fun! Our models really got an incredible workout that day and our entire crew was phenomenal to work with! Make sure to pick up an issue to see this fun-ness on the glossy pages!


Photographer: Eliesa Johnson

Styling: Erick DeLeon

Hair/Makeup: Fatima Olive

Talent: Thomas Sellwood, Wehmann Models & Talent and Orlando, Vision Management Group

Post Production: Liz Hardt

Assistants: Brandon Werth, Louisa Podlich



METRO fashion 1 March Issue // Metro Magazine // Mens Fashion

METRO fashion 2 March Issue // Metro Magazine // Mens FashionMETRO fashion 3 March Issue // Metro Magazine // Mens FashionMETRO fashion 4 March Issue // Metro Magazine // Mens Fashion

22 March Issue // Metro Magazine // Mens Fashion

November 10, 2010

I’m on the CUSP of getting ready to send out my portfolios and begin the official ELIESA campaign! That’s right…I said campaign! As far as I am concerned, this is a mission of three things:

1) To get my work in front of new editors/agents/art directors/designers and publications.

2) To network and begin building relationships with potential clients

3) To book some kick ass jobs!

While all of these above things are necessary and exciting, I am a big believer that it all starts with me. I want my potential clients to know me, just as much as they know my work. I want them to WANT me soooo bad, they can’t say no! In the commercial world, I have always been taught to ‘sell your work’ first, but I’m taking a different approach this time around! I’m selling myself, and the idea of working with me, just as much as the amazing work we produce! I want clients to know that they are getting the complete package and that we are going to ROCK whatever concept we are given!

This past week, I had the lovely opportunity to get in front of the camera and update my personal photos with my friend, Collin Hughes. I have always loved Collin’s work and it made complete sense for him to photograph me. When choosing a photographer to take images of you, choose wisely! I chose Collin, not because he is such a good friend, but rather because his work and the energy in his work emulates the exact vibe that I want to put out there for my clients. Needless to say, he did an amazing job! Here is a tiny quick preview of some of the images from our shoot!


Photographer - Collin Hughes

Hair + Makeup – Margo Gordon

Styling – Alice Sydow

eliesa testproofs 014 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

eliesa testproofs 016 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

eliesa testproofs 021 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

eliesa testproofs 023 3web2 One Step Closer // Personal Photos!eliesa testproofs 010 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

eliesa testproofs 018 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!
eliesa testproofs 024 2web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

eliesa testproofs 026 3web One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

23 One Step Closer // Personal Photos!

September 11, 2010

With every shoot that we do, I try to have someone there catching the behind-the-scene moments!! Our new photographer for our sister company, Louisa, captured some sweet shots! When she showed some to me, I thought, “This is totally why I hired you…” She is so good! I thought I would share some with you and to see more, head over to Louisa’s personal blog!

btsmoto0001 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0002 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0003 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0004 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0005 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0006 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0007 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0008 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0009 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!btsmoto0010 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

btsmoto0011 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

23 Moto Test Shoot // Behind The Scenes!

September 7, 2010

Tomorrow marks yet another test shoot for my commercial portfolio! I’ve had much critique about the new site over the last few months and the #1 word of advice was to test shoot just a little more before starting to send out my books to the big boys! I absolutely love to test, simply because it brings me back to playing. When I test, it’s only for me. When I test, I get to collaborate with the people I love to work with the most! When I test, I have the opportunity to shoot…and be able to show the world…exactly what I would love to photograph for future work! There are no limits, no boundaries and no one to answer to! The possibilities are endless with test shoots!

I wanted to take a minute to show you all how much effort we put into these! For the first time ever, I am working with a producer, Chelsey Paul! This has been THE most fabulous experience. I am trying to pull this together during the busiest time of the year, so her help is beyond necessary! Photographers: working with a producer will change your life! Maybe you don’t have the time or money to find/hire someone? Shit, find a friend to fill that role! Chelsey has been coordinating the models, location, clothes, food, and literally all communication with the crew! I’ve learned from working with her that my job is really to focus on being the photographer. I love being a part of the creative process, but to have another person who understands the concept and just helps me carry out all of the final details has been an amazing experience!

Below you will also see an example of our creative brief! When you are working with so many people…stylists, models, agents, random-people-with-sweet-cars…it’s important that you keep them all in the loop! Part of our re-brand for ELIESA was to create a solid set of these sheets, so all of our shoots from here on out can be super organized…as well as look cool! Creative briefs can be as simple or elaborate as you would like, just as long as all of the imperative information is in there!

preshoot0001 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0002 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0003 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0004 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0005 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot!

Here are some stellar iphone images showing how we compile looks together! We documented each look and wrote a final document, noting each and every little piece that is used in each look! Why? This will help us move swiftly between changes and also keep us super organized! We are always super lucky to work with amazing boutiques around town and we want to make sure and keep their attire in tip-top shape!!

After all of this planning, the last thing I needed to focus on was lighting! Now, again, this is a test shoot, so I have the opportunity to play with new equipment, concepts, etc! As most of you know, I am one of the most non-technical photographers in the world! My brain knows what I want and how to create it, but do I know what the exact piece of equipment is called? Not so much….luckily, we have the AMAZING Raul of Flashlight Photo Rental close by! I discovered flashlight last year and I am thrilled to have such a wonderful service in our community! I stopped by Flashlight today and Raul already had brainstormed on what equipment I needed to pull off my concept, helped explain it to me annnnnd, we even did a little test to make sure it will give the effect I’m looking for! I can not tell you enough how utterly important it is to surround yourself with the best people in your industry! The refreshing thing about the Flashlight team is that they are truly here for photographers and they want nothing more than to see our industry thrive!

preshoot0006 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0007 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0008 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! preshoot0009 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot! 23 Moto Test Shoot // Pre Shoot!

July 20, 2010

This past weekend was one of the proudest moment in my career thus far! I traveled to Las Vegas for the 2010 NAHA Awards! For those of you who don’t know, this is basically the Grammy’s of hair, which I a shoot I did for Metro Magazine was nominated for the Editorial Hairstylist of the Year!

It’s very hard to explain this award and I, myself, didn’t realize how big of a deal it was to be nominated. Hundreds of thousands of hairstylists submit images to NAHA each year and only the best of the best are nominated! And when I say the best of the best, I mean the MOST fabulous, hardworking, innovative and talented stylists are in this group. During the awards ceremony, the founder of Aveda was giving a speech and he said this, “You can have the greatest hair in the world, but without great makeup, a great stylist, model and photographer, the world will not understand the utter talent of your work.” I found this to be amazingly true, because in the world of fashion, you are only as good as the talent you are working with. I’ve said it once and I will say it again, COLLABORATION in this industry is key to produce an amazing shoot. It is imperative to set a big standard and only work with great people, or your work might not reach the level you want it to.

When this shoot was being dreamed up, I tried for YEARS to get a magazine to pick it up and let me shoot something BIG! Why didn’t I just do it as a test shoot on my own? 1) I wanted it published for everyone to see 2) I wanted to spread the love of fashion to Minnesota and the Midwest 3) I wanted to get paid for it 4) I wanted to be able to work with the BEST in the industry and by having a magazine behind me, I knew my chances were much greater! Grant Whittaker did an AMAZING job with the styling. He is a person that tops my list of people I wanted to work with, so I was ecstatic when he signed on! I knew that we would have some fabulous choices of attire and when he walked on set with over $150,000 worth of clothes, I knew this was going to be GREAT! Faatemah built all of the hair and wigs for the shoot and I was amazed at her talent on the day of the shoot. I mean, this girl can do HAIR! She not only understands what quality is, but she is all about pushing the limits and being innovative with the hair she creates. I was taking a HUGE risk with this shoot. Minneapolis had never seen an editorial spread like this, so people were either going to love it or hate it…

Let me tell you, taking this risk was the best thing I ever did. When it all comes down to it, this idea I dreamed up, this goal I had set for myself, these people I worked with, this magazine I convinced to support me, it ALL came together. As I was sitting there in the VIP section of the NAHA Awards and my images were flashing up on the big screen, I looked around at the PURE talent that I was surrounded by. I was a part of this. I was with ALL of these amazing, driven and talented people. I had pushed for an idea, so WE…the entire team…created something that was THIS BIG. I have never been more proud in my entire career!!

The winner in our category went to a stylist named Steve Elias, who is an amazing dude! Of course, it always sucks a wee tad to go all of that way and not take home the big prize, but absolutely none of that mattered or matters to me. I am so, so proud of everything this shoot has accomplished and all of the recognition it has received. It’s opened my eyes to an entirely new world of fashion and reminded me not to settle for anything less than greatness.

Below are some images from the 2010 NAHA Awards! Faatemah and her crew opened the night with a runway show, followed by a few people you might just recognize…

naha0001 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0002 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0003 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0004 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0005 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0006 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0007 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0008 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0009 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0010 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0011 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0012 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0013 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0014 NAHA Awards // Recap!

naha0015 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0016 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0017 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0018 NAHA Awards // Recap!naha0019 NAHA Awards // Recap!

23 NAHA Awards // Recap!

  • mary says:

    love it. love hair love makeup. so rad & inspiring to us midwesterners! i always think to myself, it would be amazing to do fashion photography…. if i lived in NY or LA, but you’re proof that that is bullshit and a crap excuse. you rock. congrats eliesa! and i’m totally amazed to see a photo of the one & only tabatha coffey on your blog!

  • Hillary Braaten says:

    HOLY SHIT!!!!!!!!!! What an amazing experience, these ladies have some serious SASS about them!!!!!!

  • WOW amazing job Eliesa!! So excited for you!!!!!