Thursday, January 5, 2012


Days before New Year’s Eve, I received an SMS from photographer-friend, Paul Borromeo. He was inviting me to a photo shoot he’s organizing with his usual roster of models, makeup artists, stylists, and equally talented shutterbug, Vinz Valdellon. Being a fellow enthusiast, I thought I was being invited to observe how they setup and direct the shoot. After all, I was also an eager learner. Instead, Paul asked me to assist Ayie Hernandez in styling his models. Ayie is also photographer who has reinvented herself as a stylist and art director.

The shoot, according to Paul, was going to be the last collaboration of Leadfoto Studios and Luxelab Makeup Artistry for the year 2011. The project was pegged to be a loud welcome to 2012.

Paul’s Leadfoto Studios is the so-called playground of budding artists and photo hobbyists.

Paul B in his playground.
The studio has produced a number of masterpieces by various photographers and the "maker," himself. He has, now, a pool of fans and followers who take so much interest and admiration for his works. Here are some of my favorites from Paul's collection.

Photo from the "7" exhibit.

The Little Black Dress production.

And, of course, this one from the birthday shoot which Paul did as a gift for my daughter.

Luxelab Makeup Artistry is composed of the young and spirited duo that is otherwise known as Tiny Pinili and Mae Ann Cortez.  Melody Tinoy, also called ‘Meloy,’ assisted Tiny for this shoot, in the absence of Mae Ann.

Makeup mavens: Mae Ann and Tiny

Since I was not doing anything at that time, I accepted Paul's invitation and went to join his team in the studio.

I armed myself with pieces from Trinkets Unlimited, an online accessories shop which I ventured in together with a former classmate in high school. The heavy bag of accessories was no match to Ayie’s trunk and piles of clothes which seemed like precious gems to fashion slaves such as myself.

Ayie and I had fun all throughout our task. We both love styling and it felt good to be in the right niche and company. I took Ayie’s lead when it came to art direction, as she had more experience on this. 
Prep time with model, L.

She made me feel at ease and prodded confidence out of me as I saw myself an amateur compared to her. I only had a brief experience in styling other people. Aside from personal styling, I'd also go to shops and take note of dresses which I think would fit the personality and style of a friend or colleague. My only professional experience in styling was way back in 2008, when Paul and I collaborated for a Toyland inspired Christmas catalogue. 

Christmas Catalogue circa 2008.

At first, we really didn't have any specific theme in mind. We only discussed and decided on it as we rummaged through the piles of tops, skirts, blazers, and shoes. Everything fell into place as we completed the look for each model. We went for Fun, Fierce, Feminine --- Bright colors for a more colourful 2012.

Vibrant hues danced through the studio together with hip tunes that pumped up everyone’s mood. 

Wacky time with L and Jess.
We finished 2 sets for solos and several group shots.

Looking at the photos now, I have to say they actually look more like ad billboards than portraits. Colorful, soulful, and unique.

I want to thank Mr. P (Paul) for inviting me and for welcoming this little amateur into their playground. Kudos to models Jess, Q, Nikita, Mayan, Kat, Lara, and L --- graceful pros who inspired to me sweat out a few more inches off my waist. Lol! :P

Complete cast: Ryam, Lara, Tiny, Jess, me, Mayan, L, Paul, Meloy, Nikita, Kat, Q, Ayie, and Vinz.

Ayie, you still owe me a tour of your secret garden. Treasure hunt, soon? Thanks for sharing your magic with me. 

Ayie and I joined the models for a "serious look."
Cheers for another fantastic year ahead! I'll definitely be there for the opening salvo. See you again, soon. 
Vinz and the girls.
The finale: Ayie and Paul strike a pose with the models.
I hope you enjoyed the set of photos by Paul Borromeo and Vinz Valdellon.
All Rights Reserved.


At January 7, 2012 at 9:46 AM , Blogger Ria Jose said...

Ayie is such a nice person talaga. :)

Meloy is a friend din. ;)

And you're looking fab. As usual.

At January 8, 2012 at 11:49 AM , Blogger Meg said...

Thanks, Ria! Ayie and Meloy are wonderful individuals who have never been selfish when it comes to sharing their time and talents.


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