Sometimes when things get a bit chilly the only cure is to snuggle up with a warm cup of tea and take a peek at a lovely styled brunch in cool blue hues. In 2015, my husband and I and our son Henry escaped from the frosty grip of a bad Quebec winter and I took a contract as a Creative Director for a Southern marketing company and helped re-brand several of their online lifestyle magazines. While it was great work, and helping to curate pages of online content had its really interesting moments, I missed the joy of creating beautiful imagery on set with my own two hands. So, one day while at lunch, explaining my need to create with a friend, who also happened to be an extremely talented local photographer--and the owner of Lifestyle photography company So Life studios--we decided to do an impromptu styled shoot the following weekend. The next day at the office I was busy day-dreaming of the upcoming shoot and this intimate brunch styled-shoot came to mind.
At first I wanted to go with more of a bright take on brunch, but after working my way through some vintage-stock and scouring the local flea-markets, I found I had gathered mostly items in blues and greens and decided to go completely tonal. Working with a tonal palette can be very eye-catching and can even be more stunning than a more traditional or diverse color palette. It also opens to the door to a variety of options in terms of decor, table-ware, florals and linens just by the act of simplifying the palette into a singular hue. This means that just about any pattern, print or fabric will work as long as it's within your tonal zone. I love using this technique to really amp up the drama of a table-scape or space by focusing on one key element and having intense color control.
To me, it's all about the details, and sometimes just capturing the simple act of pouring a cup of coffee or the way the soft morning light hits a stack of fresh croissants is enough to inspire me and make me remember all those late mornings I've celebrated with my husband and my little family. There is so much that goes into creating a lovely table and some people think that being a photo-stylist or event stylist is just about beautiful things-- beautiful flowers, beautiful linens, beautiful stuff... but the truth is that the real beauty--the beauty that resonates with us--isn't just about the flowers and the color palette, it is really created by acknowledging a moment in its fullness. There really is a special sort of art that exists in the steam off a hot cup of coffee and the marble swirling of milk in a mug of an espresso-dark brew, the crispy flake of crusty bread and the soft feathered petals of a hydrangea.
This shoot was so much fun, a little respite from the corporate world when I really needed it! All this beautiful imagery was captured by the amazingly talented April Loyle at So Life Studios and if you're ever in the Gulf of Mexico, down in the southern-most tip of Alabama, definitely give her a call for a session-- she won't disappoint.
Over here at Autumn Wood stylist HQ we're definitely not in the Gulf, we're currently wrapped in scarves, sipping Earl Grey watching the progression of a gorgeous Montreal fall, but as always, we're here for a little chat or long conversation about how to style your next dinner party, event or product photo-shoot. Just ask us... we'd love to help!