January 4, 2015

52 awesome (vintage) outfit photo shoot locations


Though my blog began its life in April 2009, it wasn't - for all intents - until we moved to my home town of Penticton, BC in early 2012, nearly three years ago now, that I began sharing vintage outfit photos here on any kind of regular basis. Sure, there had been the odd one here and there before, but our homes and the locations where we lived, coupled with the fact that we didn't have a car, as well as some of the worst years of my life on the health front, all added up to the conditions often being far from ideal when it came to shooting photos of yours truly.

Thankfully a lot of factors in our life improved when we settled into our house here and very soon after doing so, outfit shoot became a regular part of my daily world and blog alike. I've posted into the triple digits now on that front and have every intention of continuing to share my vintage ensembles with all of you as Chronically Vintage heads towards its six year and beyond.

We're blessed to live in an exceedingly beautiful part of the world (a point I've touched on in numerous posts over the years, such as this one in 2013) and I try never to take that fact for granted. The landscape - a bevy of dry soil, dusty sagebrush, verdant pine trees, shimmering blue lakes, and sky saluting mountains provides us with no shortage of stunning backdrops against which to point the camera's lens.

The same applies when we travel elsewhere in the province and country as well, as Canada really is - and I say this without a spec of bias because it's my homeland - one of the most incredibly gorgeous, diverse, inspiring countries anywhere in the whole wide world. Over the past (nearly) three years, I've had a stellar time scouting photo shoot locations near and far, be they here in Penticton, elsewhere in the Okanagan, or further afield, in both urban and wildness settings, and while reflecting on that point recently an idea popped into the ol' noggin.

In the spirit of the new year, with its twelve months comprised of fifty-two weeks, I thought it would be tons of fun to share a selection of fifty-two different photo shoot locations with all of you, to inspire both you and I alike when it comes to taking outfit photos for our blogs, social media, or any purpose your heart desires this year (and beyond!).

This list is by no means entirely exhaustive of course. You can, after all, quite literally pose and take a photo just about anywhere you go, so long as doing so doesn't break any rules and you've got the lighting and equipment necessary to capture an image. You may have noticed that in the title of today's post, the word vintage is in brackets. This is because I feel that the following list works excellently for both vintage and contemporary fashionistas alike, as well - it should be added - for those who may be working as a hobbyist or professional photographer, be it with with friends, relatives or paying clients.

I have not put these locations in any particular order, nor are they an instruction manual for the coming year, but rather an enjoyable list that I sincerely hope will help spur on your outfit photo shoots, whether you live in Pittsburg or Paris, Winnipeg or Washington, DC, or anywhere in this vast, wonderful world of ours.


 photo 52awesomevintagephotoshootlocationsgraphic_zpsd684abea.png



1. On a foot or hiking path up a mountain



2. On the train tracks and/or at a train station (all the better if it's a vintage one!)



3. Amongst the tall stalks in a field of corn, wheat or hay



4. In front of, or inside, your childhood school (or any school where you have permission to shoot)



5. On a pier, wharf, or dock





6. Against the weathered wood of an old barn




7. In, or on top of, the sheets and blanket of a made made entirely with crisp white linen




8. Standing/splashing in, or hopping over, a puddle of rain (in a nod to Henri Cartier-Bresson)




9. On the pitcher's mound of a baseball diamond



10. At a log cabin or ski chalet





11. In your closet or dressing room



12. Jumping on a trampoline



13. While camping (in front of the fire, in a tent, etc)



14. Standing still in the midst of a busy crowd (say, at Grand Central Station in NYC)



15. On an idyllic tree lined residential street





16. On the tarmac of an airport (this will likely require getting permission or finding an airstrip that is no longer being used)


17. At an outdoor skating rink


18. Under a clothesline strung with with classic linens (like vintage pillow cases, aprons and kitchen towels)


19. At a vintage/classic car show


20. In a tunnel or beneath a bridge/overpass





21. At fair or carnival



22. Outside as the rain or snow comes tumbling down (umbrella optional)



23. In the bleachers at a sporting event



24. At a Christmas tree farm or lot



25. Beneath/in front of the marquee at a theater





26. At a laundromat



27. Standing on the balcony of a high rise apartment or hotel room



28. At a wedding (being sure of course to not steal the spotlight from the couple and their photographer)



29. On a boat or cruise ship



30. Standing (or sitting) on a flight of stairs (indoors or out)





31. Amongst the stacks of books at a second hand bookstore or library (ask permission first)



32. Sitting on the (sturdy!) limb of a tree



33. On a tropical beach with the gorgeous teal-blue sea in front, or behind, you



34. In front a famous landmark (e.g., the Eiffel Tower, the Statue of Liberty, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, etc)



35. Outdoors at night (photographic lightning will likely be required)





36. At your workplace




37. In an orchard that's in bloom during the spring or full of fruit come summer or fall



38. Holding a large bunch of balloons in wide open field or meadow




39. At an outdoor market, street fair, or similar location




40. Standing in the snow (chilly yes, but oh-so-gorgeous!)






41. In an abandoned industrial building (ensure it's safe for you to be there first)



42. Against a fabulous solid coloured wall



43. In a lush garden or flower filled park



44. At a zoo, petting zoo, farm, dog park or other location with cute critters



45. In front, or standing on, a public bandstand





46. On a roof top (again, be sure it's safe and that you're allowed to be there)



47. Standing on a frozen lake, river, pond, etc (be 100% sure the ice is thick enough to safely support you before venturing onto it)



48. On the sidewalk (bonus points if there's a great house, fence, gate, or other point of interest in the shot)




49. In front of (or if you want to channel your inner Anita Ekberg in La Dolce Vita, standing inside) a water fountain



50. On the banks of a river (that's the North Thompson River in the photo below)






51. At a building/construction site (only do so with permission and if it's safe to be there)



52. Playing at a playground (letting your inner child run free!)



(All photography by Tony Cangiano)




★  ★  ★



Of course, and I realize that this may go without saying, but...always be careful wherever you're shooting. Make sure that you have stable footing (such as on a river bank or train trestle), that you're not apt to be hit by traffic, that there are no dangerous power lines nearby, that the weather conditions are suitable, that if you opt for #47, you're on ice that is incredibly solid and can support your weight without cracking; that you're not risking doing damage to any historical and/or sacred sites by taking photos there, and that you're not breaking the law or putting yourself (or anyone else) in danger by shooting in a given location.

The area where you live by be starkly different from my own, a point I tried to keep in mind while composing this list. If you live in the heart of a sprawling urban metropolis, you may not have a babbling brook or a vast expanse of desert nearby. Likewise, by the same token, if you live in the rural countryside, posing on the balcony of a high rise may not be in cards, nor would a backdrop of gritty, glaringly vibrant graffiti tattooed on a concrete wall.

While there is zero problem with reusing photo shoot locations (especially if you do so at different times of the years, with new outfits, holding fresh props, etc) - I've done so myself numerous times at this point in time - you do want to aim for that marvelous spice of life, variety, and keep your eyes peeled for new locations. Think outside the box, follow local fashion bloggers and the websites (and/or social media accounts) of photographers in your area (if there are any other) and see where they're shooting.

Believe me when I say, it's easy to live in even a small town for many years, if not decades, and to still not have thought of every potential spot to take photos. Sometimes a single wall (say, like my hugely beloved grey wall in Kelowna), majestic tree in a park, picnic table near a lake, friend's backyard, or other spot you hadn't noticed or looked at as a photo shoot location can become one in a split second.

Though sometimes, especially if you're traveling, it's best to just take photos wherever you possibly can. If time and circumstance permit, it's always fun and can really add a great deal to your images if you stop and consider the different dynamics at play. Will a backdrop clash with or compliment your outfit? Does it seem in stark contrast to the decade that you're wearing? (Sometimes this can work in favour of a shoot, at others against it - when in doubt, a natural backdrop such as the woods, a beach, or garden are always wonderfully timeless choices.)

And in the same vein, are the colours of that location so similar to your green dress and navy blue hat that you're apt to look like you're trying to camouflage into your surroundings? Will you be too warm, or conversely, too cold if you stay there for long enough to get the hundred, two hundred or more photos that many of us shoot in order to nail a small handful of really terrific images?

As touched on in a post from the fall of 2013 called How Tony and I Do Vintage Outfit Shoots, I (we) keep a running list of locations that we may want to shot at or return one day (sometimes a location offers up multiple spots to take photos in that may differ from one another, such as a public garden on the grounds of a historical building or a park with different, distinct areas and types of vegetation to be had there), that we call our phosholo (an abbreviation for “photo shoot location”).

If don't have such a list yourself already, I highly encourage you to start one. Many is the day when you want to take outfit snaps, but might not be in the mood or have the time to come up with a bracingly fresh location to do so in. Jot down anything that comes to mind or that you spot. These days I like to keep my phosholo list in Evernote, but you could use a Word or Notepad document, a note taking app on your phone, or of course the classic option of pen and paper.

I really hope that this list of fifty-two photo shoot locations has helped inspire you as we look ahead to another fabulous year of vintage outfit posts. I'd love to hear about some of your favourites, be they on this list or not. In fact, especially if they're not! Please share your top spots and/or most memorable photos shoot locations in the comments below and help inspire your fellow bloggers who are reading this post with even more great ideas than the ones I've rounded up here today.

Happy, safe, and very fun vintage outfit shooting in 2015, my sweet friends!

49 comments:

  1. What a lovely list! I would like to point out though, that in many places in the US it is illegal to take photos with in a certain distance of railroad tracks that are still operational!! Make sure you check the laws in your area before shooting on the tracks.

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    1. Thank you very much for raising that excellent point, dear gal, I really appreciate it. Safety and abiding the law must always, no matter what, come first when taking photos for our blogs.

      ♥ Jessica

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  2. These are some awesome ideas! Finding new, fun places to shoot is something I've been thinking about a lot lately, and seeing all of these suggestion definitely gave me a little "a-ha!" moment. This one is one to bookmark for sure.

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  3. Such a great post! I think my new years blogger-resolution must be to take more care with the backdrops of my photos!

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  4. Love these creative ideas. Sadly, society frowns upon and inhibits me from most outdoor locations unless they're unpopulated. I so want to take pictures outside and have snuck into parks, etc. but with considerable apprehension. Don't want a "scene" when I simply what to take photos. Oh, well... that's my life. For everyone else, these are fun suggestions.

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    1. I'm truly sorry that sociey hasn't reached a point of advancement where one can dress in whatever clothing they want regardless of gender in public (assuming they're not nude or being incredibly offensive, of course), dear Ally. I can imagine how frustrating that must be for you. Though many of these spots are quite public, from this list and in general, here are some that strike me as being somewhat more private and that may work well for you:

      -Secluded woods

      -Graveyard (especially at night)

      -Abandoned buildings/homes (assuming it's safe and legal to be in them)

      -A rented home/hotel room/cabin/similar temporary abode

      -A friend's house or yard (if the yard is private enough)

      -A fancy dress/costume party, masquerade ball, or other similar event where everyone is in costume

      -Working with an open minded professional photographer in their studio

      I really hope these few ideas help a bit and moreover that one day society can just let folks be who they are in public without batting an eye.

      ♥ Jessica

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  5. Love all your outfits, you look amazing as always, and great backgrounds too. Just listing all those places to take photos brings up a chock full of other ideas for places too! Thanks for the photos and ideas!

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    1. Thank you very much, dear Victoria. That's wonderful to hear! I adore it when things I post can act as a creative jumping off point for my readers.

      Big hugs & happy outfit shooting this year!
      ♥ Jessica

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  6. Ah, great post again! Although I did find myself going through it like a checklist... I've only chalked up a total of 8 of these 52 suggestions... mostly because I keep re-using the same 8, don't travel about too much and don't have the guts to ask permission for locations... But some of these got me thinking. There's a great bandstand in my old hometown! I did take photos last year in front of the Eiffel Tower though - use personal triumph as there were so many people around! :) x

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  7. Wow! What a list :) thanks for the inspiration!

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  8. 2009 is such a long time to have a blog. You're so lucky to live in such a place that lets you get such great photos. I struggle for locations where I live, I'm also too much of wimp to explore too much ha.

    I love the outfits (and locations!)

    Good luck in 2015.
    Corinne x
    www.skinnedcartree.com

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    1. Thank you very much, sweet dear. It is a long time indeed, but goodness, what an incredible journey it's been and continues to be as my blog heads towards its 6th birthday in April. It's been a life changing experience and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

      There are several locations (spanning spots from my parent's deck to local beaches) that I turn to often as well. Nothing wrong with sticking with what you know and love - at least some of the time. :)

      Big hugs & joyful wishes for 2015,
      ♥ Jessica

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  9. Nº 8 is perfect for me as an art historian <3 this is so complete, thank you so much :)

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    1. Definitely!!! Come springtime, we should both channel our inner HCB with outfit snaps of a puddle jumping nature. :)

      Big hugs & many thanks for your lovely comment,
      ♥ Jessica

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  10. Beautiful shots, and creative ideas as well! In Michigan, we lived on 7 acres, next to 20 more acres owned by my grandpa, with century-old decaying farm buildings dotting the property. Plenty of perfect locations for photography! But here--with the crowds and with all the attention we draw just by the fact that we're here...I've kind of just skipped photoshoots. I don't even mind the attention at all, but I also don't necessarily want to do things that are obviously out of the ordinary when I'm being watched at all times. Maybe if I really love my outfit I'll do one....

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  11. I loved scrolling through this and seeing your own shots portray some of your examples. You look stunning! I love your style, all your outfits look so well-thought-out with the colors, details, and accessories. My favorite location suggestions were the train tracks, the beach, the tunnel, a classic car show, and a famous landmark. I will be keeping some of these in mind for future photoshoots! I really need to venture outside my boyfriend's backyard for pictures... :)

    xo, Serli
    www.lesoleilchic.blogspot.com

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  12. How inspiring! Great ideas on the subject, sweet Jessica. Thank you so much! :)

    Beta x

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  13. very inspirational post!
    and sooo lovely to see some of your beautiful pics again!
    xxxxxx
    p.s.: would send you some snow, but it´s melted around the railroad house....
    <3

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  14. Odds are I'm going to steal quite a few from this list but you've reminded me of a few that would be fun Sunday day trips to get some incredible shots from my world. :)

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  15. So many beautiful outfits.....my absolute favorite is the nighttime shot......dress, wrap, gauntlet gloves are all just perfect! Too bad I live on the other end of the country (New Brunswick), or I would be seriously begging to borrow the gloves!

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    1. And I would very happily lend them to you, dear gal. It's awesome that you're on the East Coast. I have not encountered many vintage loving folks online east of Ontario, let alone in the Maritime provinces. Do you know many others with similar interests in your neck of the Canadian woods?

      Big hugs & many thanks for your lovely comment,
      ♥ Jessica

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  16. I enjoyed this post a lot, I generally take photos in the same place as I take my photos alone and would feel embarrassed to drag my tripod out in public and start striking poses, but it's definitely given me some things to think about! Scouting out more interesting locations is something I'd like to eventually do in the future, and it's totally true what you say about unexpected spots being perfect, I discovered an area in my garden which gets perfect light and is interesting without being distracting.

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  17. your outfit locations are always amazing! I tend to stick to my run down front porch, I definitely need better locations and a better camera. Your posts are such an inspiration

    retro rover

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    1. Thank you deeply, my sweet friend. You're lucky to have a good sized porch to work on. We have a mere wisp of space between our door and the patch of yard in front of our condo. We did a couple of outfit shoots there shortly after we moved in back in 2012 and more recently, took some photos there last Halloween, but it doesn't work terribly well for this purpose. I would soooo love to have a big, vintage (or vintage style) wrap around porch one day and follow your lead with more outfit snaps taken in front of my abode.

      Oodles of hugs,
      ♥ Jessica

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  18. Such great ideas. I always love your outfit photos so much. xxx

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  19. Lovely :)

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    1. Thank you very much. If you take outfit photos yourself, I hope that this list helps to inspire you for 2015 and well beyond.

      Have a fantastic New Year,
      ♥ Jessica

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  20. Wow, what a list! :) Impressive. You forgot the castle, dear. ;) I've just started taking outfit photos for Instagram, which I just do with my Lumia and in front of my mirror. So again, you are the big pink rhinestone decorated elephant and I'm the little mouse. ;) No, since I don't have a photographer (and am a poor model) and don't have any ambitions on going pro, it is OK for me. But I will keep the list, since I once in a while shoot photos of friends and family. Son regularly wants me to take his photos. :)

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    1. :) Totally! So true, let's add that (a castle) as the 53rd entry for those who might have the joy of living near or visiting one in their travels. Not at all, my darling friend. I never see myself above any one, let alone a treasured friend like you. It's awesome that you're taking self portraits and sharing them online. If I didn't have Tony (or someone else in my life to take my snaps), I would be self photoing it right, left and center, too, and that would be fine (strange at first, having gotten used to my wonderful in house photographer, but ultimately fine). If you're having fun and are happy with the pictures, that's all that matters.

      Scores of hugs & happy January wishes,
      ♥ Jessica

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  21. Hello there!

    (It's Christmas Eve here - yay!) :D

    I'm a small town girl, myself. And, many people think wrong of our places. They assume that size matters, and the smaller the town, the smaller the amount of places we have to snap pics, to look at, to hide away (indeed, that is needed, sometimes).
    Let me set this matter straight: people could not be more wrong. As you've wrote yourself, small town does not mean no place - quite the opposite: there are so many places, neatly tucked away from people's eyesight. I take daily walks (not much else to do, since there's snow everywhere). And, to my surprise - it is only NOW that I'm seeing some of the spots - it strikes me, since I've been living in the same town for my whole life.. oh, how little we see when we hurry. :)

    Marija

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  22. Oh, I forgot to mention that I LOVE the photo of you on the bridge, wearing a summer dress and the wind catching your skirt. You could make the photo into a post card and sell it signed on Etsy. I would buy it on the spot. Just a suggestion from one of your fans. And do tell Tony. We always compliment you, but he is the one taking the lovely photos. He is very talented. hugs from Denmark :)

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    1. Aww, you're so sweet, dear Sanne. Thank you!!! It's touching to know you'd buy a postcard of me. :)

      I will definitely pass along your immensely kind comment/compliment to Tony. He really does take some stellar photos of me and this blog wouldn't begin to be the same without his awesome help (which is why I make sure I thank him from the bottom of my heart after each shoot we do together).

      Tons of hugs coming right back at you from Canada,
      ♥ Jessica

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  23. What a great list! I love it and I'm going to pass it on to my friend who is slowly developing her 'pinup/rockabilly' style as suggestions. xx

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  24. Oh, thank you for this list! I've been thinking lately about mixing up my photo shoot locations. It's a bit tricky for me as I usually just snap off a few shots as I'm racing out the door for the day. Also, I'm quite shy about taking pictures of myself in public. Because I use a tripod for most of my photo shoots, I feel quite self-conscious setting up the camera and then posing all by myself. But even on this list there are some fabulous ideas that I can use just around my own home and yard. And there are a few places within walking distance of my flat that I could comfortably snap some pictures at. Thank you for the inspiration, I can't wait to shake things up a bit with my outfit photos.

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    1. You are entirely welcome, my dear friend. That's a very good point - objectively the bulk of these locations do assume that you have someone there to man to camera for you. I'm happy to know that a few seem like likely solo shoot locations for you though. It's such a shame we don't live nearby. I'd be happy to take your photo sometimes if we did (and I sure Tony would be happy to as well).


      Big hugs & many thanks for your lovely comment,
      ♥ Jessica

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  25. Oh, this is an awesome list Jessica! Thanks for sharing...I get stuck on the same two spots....although I have managed one photo shoot in front of an old barn! :)

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    1. Lucky you, dear Sue! Shooting at an old barn is one of my dream locations! Especially for a summer ensemble - say something gingham or otherwise "country-ish" or conversely, a red barn surrounded by mountains of snow in the dead of winter. Hopefully one day! :)

      Tons of hugs & happy weekend wishes,
      ♥ Jessica

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  26. This is a great list! Like so many others, I end up in my own house/garden, or the house/garden of my models! This morning I started my own Phosholo (love the term), and realised how many great locations there are just in my own suburb, many within walking distance. It's time to get out there! Thanks for the inspiration :)

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  27. Sweet Jessica, your list was very useful for me, because I intend to shoot many looks in 2015.
    I have a difficulty with local, most of my photos I do at home, but your list gave me great ideas.
    I have another problem, I'm very shy and I am ashamed to shoot in front of strangers ... hahaha
    But I am brave, I will make an advance planning.
    Thanks for the very precious friend tips!
    Smacks of Cris.
    www.mixdacrisretro.com

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  28. This is such a great, interesting list of locations. Well done for thinking up so many! It is very timely for me as I would like to do more outfit posts this year, I so love looking at everyone else's. I will just have to get over the not wanting to stand in front of a camera bit first! I love your outfit in the last photo, the colours in the skirt are gorgeous.

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  29. dear gal, you have the best photo shoot locations over there and a super talented photographer aswell. ... as my man has shaky hands, i have to stick to my boring tripod/stairwell photo sets ... but it is a new stair well ... probably a bit orange ;)

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  30. Beautiful outfits, Jessica, and you look fabulous in all of them! I am not sure why but Gingham has always made me feel at home. I have loved it ever since I can remember.

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  31. This is so fun! So many excellent suggestions dear Jessica!

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  32. I miss all the photo shoot locations near my old house, they were in walking distance and there were so many pretty ones... Where we are now it's definitely harder to grab a nice shoot location easily. I think this is putting me off outfit photos a bit as I don't have much time for traveling to locations....

    Still, this list has inspired me so I'll have to try a little bit harder this year! Thanks for sharing. ❤

    xox,
    bonita of Lavender & Twill

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  33. I don't only need to work on my backdrops. but also on the photographer and the camera !
    Some of your locations are so dreamy...

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  34. Your comment about standing in the middle of the road gave me a thought or two - what if you were standing on one of those awe-inspiring North American highways that seem to stretch forever into the distance, now wouldn't that be a super backdrop? Or if you can find one of those covered bridges that they always have in films. Lots of ideas! x

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    1. That would be absolutely fantastic. Such roads are more common in American than Canada, but if on ventured to parts of the prairie provinces in the middle of the country or the territories in the north, in particular, it could be accomplished. It's definitely something I'll aim for if ever in those kinds of areas. Closer to home it would be trickier, but probably could be done on more of a back country type of road. I'll be searching for one now. :)

      Thank you for your wonderful comment, dear gal.
      ♥ Jessica

      *PS* Love the covered bridge idea. Those are so far in most parts of Canada now, but again, I bet one could be found someplace. Start the search!

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  35. I really wish I had a photographer like Tony to help me with such outfit posts. I know how to get the right pose for people when I'm behind the camera, but in front, I lose all courage and don't know what to do. I want to invest in a full length mirror so I can try to do self portraits for the blog. What do you think? Too blah?

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    1. I say go for it - it's not blah at all! If you can set it up in a room with a nice neutral coloured wall and a fair bit of natural light (or a good photography lighting setup) it could be really charming. And if it doesn't pan out too well on the photo front, you still have a wonderful full length mirror, which is always a truly handy item to have when getting dressed.

      ♥ Jessica

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