Hello lovelies! Today I am sharing a recent headshot session with the wonderful Andi Sciacca.
She was swift and snatched up one of my last available branding sessions for last month, and I’m so glad she did. Andi already purchased a gift voucher to bring her Mother in for portraits but she decided she wanted to do a headshot session with me for her own branding needs first.
The last time Andi was photographed was ____ We had so much fun in studio getting to know each other and creating some new headshots and reminding her how wonderful it is to exist in photos.
And now I’d like to share a bit about Andi and about her experience, directly from Andi herself:
“My name is Andi Sciacca –– and I’m a Wisconsin native who returned to MKE at the end of 2015 after spending about 20 years in New York. I love being back here at home –– and have really enjoyed getting to reconnect with my hometown! I spent the last few decades working in higher education, and will always say that my worst day teaching is better than my best day doing any other kind of work. So, in order to share that passion with as many people as possible, while I still teach, mentor, and develop curriculum –– I also own my own company, specializing in providing guidance, direction, and mentorship to educational, food-based, and tech-connected startups. I spend a *lot* of time with a laptop in front of my face –– and while I love the work I do, I try to make sure to make room for down-time in my calendar –– and can happily say that I manage to find reasons to be joyful every day.
In terms of my decision to work with Jennifer, I’ve wanted to sit with her for photos and a branding experience for over a year! I first discovered her through the work she did with a friend. I was struck by how the photos she took captured not just the most beautiful presentation of my friend’s image –– but also how *perfectly* Jennifer managed to showcase the intangibles of my friend’s personality. She was able to connect with my friend’s kind heart, sense of humor, and sparkling enthusiasm –– and I knew I wanted to work with someone who could make an image come to life the way this one did.I’d reached out to Jennifer immediately, but shortly thereafter ended up side-lined with a pretty significant injury to my back, hips, and legs that had me in a wheelchair for months. This was a powerful and transformative experience for me. It made me hyper-aware of my body, and it brought the need to show more care to my physical self sharply into focus. The experience of going from wheelchair, to walker, to crutches, to the cane I now use taught me something I’d definitely lacked before the injury –– and that was patience. With every little step forward, I re-dedicated myself to being fully present in all ways –– not just intellectually, emotionally, professionally, socially –– but also physically, visibly, and temporally / in the moment. It was that awareness that made me realize that I wanted photographs of me as I am. Or, well, sort of… Let me explain.In order to understand how big this experience was for me, you should know that I am an absolutely no-nonsense, utilitarian, no make-up, hair in a messy bun, wear the same four things all the time kind of person. But I also have a bit of a punk rock past –– one in which I wore bright pink hair, bright red lips, and blacker-than-death eyeliner. However, the me I am today feels super fancy if I put some Rosebud lip balm on before I go out the door. So when I decided to do these photos, I said (and I meant) that I was game for anything and everything that Jennifer and her hair and make-up team wanted to do. I told them I wanted to be bold, to have fun, and to just experience the moment –– and I am so glad I did.The day of our shoot was amazing. I felt like a rockstar –– and loved every minute of the experience. I felt completely comfortable and at-ease working with Jennifer. She is funny, kind, and was incredibly sensitive to my mobility limitations. She is an expert at making people feel phenomenal and she instilled a sense of calm in me –– and total confidence in her mastery of her own craft –– to the point that I just listened and relaxed into everything she asked of me. It was an absolutely wonderful afternoon.
The end result is a fantastic set of total glam-baby shots that are a bit like a visual playground for me. I was shocked (but positively!) when I saw the first image –– I think the first thing I said was, “Are those my actual eyeballs?!” –– and from there, the reveal continued on as a lovely, surprising, and delightful experience. Some of the images are already designated for website, social media, and press for speaking events –– and some are just for me to have as reference and to remember the day. Some even made me laugh out loud, and I enjoyed going through them with Jennifer, in her studio, seeing myself on her big screen monitor. It all felt a bit larger than life! Me looking serious. Me looking fierce. Me looking totally and completely nerd-tastic in all the best ways… It was an absolute blast –– and I am already planning to do it again! I think this time we might go with a different look and a different vibe –– maybe less makeup, maybe something completely different… And while I’m not sure what that next day will hold, I do know it’s going to be big, big fun!” ~Andi