The Champagne Skirt

Julie Godbolt (Group Leader)
Vancouver, Wa - Frenchman’s Bar - Columbia River

Instagram | Websight

After participating in Teresa Vick's group in the second round of the traveling dress, I knew I wanted to make my own team for the next round! Forming my team was easy, and I asked some of the most creative ladies that I have the pleasure of knowing to join my group. After our group was formed we got busy choosing a dress. We ended up settling on a skirt that would allow each of us to further personalize our visions and plans by each being able to utilize different tops. Our dress traveled the globe! From the Pacific Northwest, across the country to the East coast and finally to Tasmania! Not surprisingly, I was blown away by the talent in my group when I saw each of their images. This dress, this concept, that can spur such different creativity in different people is what is wonderful about photography. No one can be so uniquely you as yourself. And there is value in what we all bring to the table, or in this case, the dress!
So I thought I had my time with our dress planned out. I thought I knew what I wanted to do. But as is often the case, when you plan, things do not go to plan….sometimes they get better! I had envisioned my time with our dress, chosen locations and even a top to go with it. The only thing I had not planned was the date with a specific model since I wasn’t sure when my exact week would be. When the dress arrived, I was amid a session with a local dance creative. I get so immersed in watching dance, that I somewhat impulsively (for me) changed my mind and asked two of their professional dancers to model for me! I was so jazzed for our session, I changed my location and everything to fit my new vision. But again, things do not always go to plan. When I arrived at our location day of, and entire structure that I had been planning to use in my shoot was gone. Torn down. Brief moment of panic and then quick scouting in the areas and I found the perfect spots for us to make some magic! And magic they made indeed! From wooded paths to riverside sunsets. My two dancers were even willing to indulge me and get in the water to dance! It was one of my favorite shoots all summer!


 

Anita Cline, My Three Sons Images

Lawrenceville, Ga. - Freemans Mill Park
Instagram | Facebook

I was so excited for the Champagne Skirt to arrive in April! Until..that is, we had a week of rain! We had one day of sun while I had my turn with the dress and my daughter in law (who is my model) said she could do it, but at noon. Say what? Noon…not exactly what I had in mind! But, you work with what you have, right? So we headed to an old Grist Mill near her & hoped for some cover from the mid day sun. We were able to take advantage of the beautiful waterfall and some of the old moss covered stone located at the mill. And of course, I freelensed my whole session! (no surprise there!)


 

Fiona Seaburn

Hobart, Tasmania
Instagram

Rebirth. Transition. Growth.
These are words that came to me while I was envisioning my week with our teams skirt. It was important to me to attempt to tell a story through my images and I wanted to use the skirt in a different way, not depicting a skirt at all in parts but using it to tell a story. Although my time with the skirt felt rushed and underwhelming as I had been anticipating this moment for months and the weather here in Tasmania, Australia was freezing cold and bleak. I envisioned light and reflections, the depth of water but, no, the weather had other ideas. I'm fairly happy with my pictures and I feel I stayed true to who I am as an artist and that is a good thing. Sometimes, you think you're going to head in a particular direction with your work but it evolves and morphs into something of it's own. I love that. 


 

Kelly Akers

New Albany, IN
Instagram | Facebook

I was the first in our super talented group to get the dress. It was April and still chilly here in Indiana but my favorite model, my youngest daughter, was amazing as usual. We shot in several locations but I think this urban location in downtown New Albany ended up being my favorite. We found this awesome alley that had just hosted a fashion show which I thought was serendipitous so of course we had to include the sign. I love the movement that my daughter gave this amazing tulle skirt. 


 

Stephanie Dodson

Seattle, WA
Instagram | Websight

Shortly before it was my turn with the dress my life went into an unexpected upheaval, and I found myself living day to day in a kind of survival mode as a major decision hung over me. I worried about not having the focus or energy to give that I felt this project deserved, but I'm so glad I pushed through because it ended up being wonderfully therapeutic and healing.
I often find with self-portraiture, which is what I chose to do for this, that it isn’t until culling the images when I learn what actually emerged during the shoot: the marrow, what revealed itself. It’s often very different than what I intended. It’s always better because it’s truth. That’s where, for me, the healing lies. This experience, specifically, has helped me on my journey to a more solid sense of self, worth, and strength. I am learning that those things have actually been there within me along.


 

Leslie Schoen

Marshfield, WI
Instagram | Websight

For my time with the dress, I knew I wanted to photograph in an old Wisconsin barn. I love the rich woods, worn or rusted textures, and the opportunity for dramatic low light work. I got to work with a wonderful model whom I have photographed previously, and had a little extra help handling all of this dress! It was a blast! We had limited time in this space but got to play around with some slow shutter work using rear curtain flash, and of course some freelensing! 


 

Lauren Jensen

Boise, ID - Foothills

Instagram | Websight

My sister, my niece and I, (as well as their puppy), headed to the foothills at the edge of town where were could catch the sunset from atop a hill, which we hiked up with the skirt in tow in a sack. I loved the backlight filtering through the tule and how the champagne pink color of the skirt mimicked the subtle fading colors in the sky. 
My niece is a natural beauty and has been since day one. She has been my muse ever since and I knew she had to be my model for the skirt. It was large on her tiny waist, but fitting for her stage in life between childhood and womanhood. While still young enough to thoroughly enjoy dressing up like a princess, she is growing into a young woman of wisdom, compassion and talent. Her light radiates and the skirt, with the light shining through, was the perfect complement to her beauty and light. The last picture with her looking out towards the sunset reminds me of this quote and is a message I want her to remember. "The future is as bright as your faith." Thomas S. Monson.


 

April Christopher

Springfield, OR

Instagram | Facebook | Websight

I was both excited and nervous to shoot this dress. It was a lot bigger than I envisioned when first joining, and I was afraid I couldn't pull it off. I had an engaged couple and awesome mountaintop sunset location set up for weeks, and the morning of my model came down with an illness. I had to send the dress out a couple days later, so I frantically texted a few of my best friends that may be able to help and thankfully two of them responded they could. We decided to go downtown in the evening and just have fun while getting creative with light and angles. We each took a turn in the dress, laughing harder than we have in ages. I ended up having such a good time shooting out of my comfort zone with friends who saved the day.