The Perks of Terri Samantha Photography.
I have known Terri Perks, owner of Terri Samantha Photography for over 20 years. So when we decided to shoot something that would be all about “bringing childhood summer memories into a modern fashion feel”, I knew it would be no trouble at all to find a sense of playground fun in our collaboration. Seeing as it's how our friendship began in the first place.
We're about to get a little nostalgic folks, so get comfortable, take a deep breath and cast your mind all the way back to May 2020. We were in the middle of a heatwave. There was no (necessary and sensible) demand for us to wear masks in shops, because shops weren't open. There were cheers of applause for the NHS every Thursday, because the NHS was a valued beacon of hope to us all: not something that the Government had served up in a trade deal to be devoured by Tiny Hands Trump. And Terri Perks and I were in talks to work on a socially distanced shoot as soon as we were able. It was a simpler time.
In deciding where we wanted to go with the collab, we talked all things block "colours, milkshakes, picking flowers and playing with bubbles". All that great stuff that really took us back to summers of playing out until the street lights came on, making £3 last the whole day and still taking change home, two tip tops, a bottle of pop and a cone of chips later. It was exciting to talk about combining new looks with an old feel, it was also a bonus that this aesthetic would be something new for both of us. Retro is back in, floral's will always be 'in' for Spring (just don't ask Meryl about it), and bubbles are fun at any stage of life. So why not celebrate those things, in a time when there wasn't too much to celebrate.
Terri had a few specific ideas in regard to make up, but we really found our direction when I shared with her my 'fun fashion' Pinterest board; which I think it's safe to say she loved. In fact, to quote her exact praise:
"Loooove the pop colour stuff!" - Terri Perks, 2020.
And let's be honest, what is not to love? Give it a click to see the whole thing in all its yummy-pin-board-y-goodness.
I spent an afternoon or two practicing make up looks, which was a joyful challenge for me. I love bold make up, but I scarcely wear it and so haven't ever really practiced it. However, gathering together accessories and clothing was a breeze seeing as I had spent many an hour of boredom organizing and reorganizing my wardrobe just trying to pass the time. I think at this point everything was arranged by colour. Right now it's in sections of Clean and Needs Washing. A lot can change in a few short weeks. Anyway anyway...
LEWKS decided upon, we needed locations. With the lock down as it was, I used my daily walk to do some location hunting; finding some hidden gems right on the door step. Literally. One of the locations was my door step. I also found some bright garage doors, a painted rainbow, a rustic (code for broken and shabby, with a certain charm) set of stairs, a few too many alleyways, and some gorgeous spots of bloom in the local park. With so much so close we decided on a route, and planned a socially distanced walk through the town to get our steps up and our shoot on!
And that we did...
Unlike my previous blog posts, this is being written after the release of the work, so you can see more of this set on the Studio and Location portfolio page.
We worked hard, but we talked harder. And for those of you that know both Terri and I, you won't be surprised by that in the slightest. Our relentless catching up, fueled by the reality of finally being in the company of a human we hadn't been cooped up with for 10 weeks, was as tiring as it was fun.
While we worked and I gave my unshakable trust to Terri (I couldn't see the back of camera images at a safe social distance) I could tell from her reaction that these were images to be excited about. The vibrancy of the backdrops, the bold choices in styling, the ease in which we worked together, it all felt right. After our walk in the heat, and all that chatting, we called it a day when the bubbles were gone, the milk shake was warm, and the chewing gum had lost all flavour. Which if I'm honest was about 10 seconds after opening the strip. But for those first glorious 9 seconds, that nostalgic candyfloss taste was divine. I was nine again, and ready to try and blow a bubble as big as my face.
I've said it before, and I'll say it again, you can't beat doing what you love, with the people you love. And this was no exception. I am incredibly proud of Terri and all she has achieved at Terri Samantha Photography; she is a bright and shining example of perusing your dreams with both passion and a lot of damn hard graft. If you are in the market to book a new born shoot or are searching for your wedding photographer; check out her website or socials for info. All are linked below.
Terri Samantha Photography tech details: Nikon D5300 Nikkor 16-80mm f/5.0 Nikon 50mm f/4.0 ISO 320-500 Natural lighting. Retouched in Lightroom and Photoshop.