Meet Sophie. Sophie is a fashion blogger, writer and journalist who studied Journalism at Cardiff university before furthering her resume by taking a MA in Fashion Journalism at Central Saint Martins. She is also my girlfriend, best-friend, my inspiration and everything in between. I still remember the first day she let me loose with her camera, taking photos of her latest outfit, little did I know at the time, she was just sizing me up for a promotion into being her full-time #instagramhusband later down the line. She looks normal, right? Pretty, smiley, cute, butter wouldn't melt...(insert a vinyl scratch sound here)...wrong. To get that one shot, takes a hell of a lot of blood, sweet and tears and probably the odd "I'm not doing this anymore" tantrum!! Saying that I actually wouldn't change her for anyone, but it is hard dating a fashion blogger and here are my tips for guys out there who are in a similar relationship.
It's a freezing cold, misty, rainy winter Sunday morning at 7am, not proper rain but that fine rain that a girls hate, especially ones like Sophie who have long flowing, perfectly curled hair that she has been up since 6am perfecting. I'm hungover and Sophie and I have a photoshoot planned somewhere in Chelsea. We are leaving at 7am, so I get to hers for then because the night before she has all the outfits that she wants to photograph planned. Then in the morning all she has to do is get ready and go. A less seasoned #instagramhusband might actually believe her, not me, nope, never...yet I'm also savvy enough to know that I must be on time (regardless if she is running late), I don't want anything to 'ruin her vibe' and plus I have my morning boyfriend chores to do. A typical photo shoot morning will go something like this:
First is the 'approval of her outfits' stage and probably the simplest to get right, as deep down she knows she looks great and is just after reassurance. So when the questions come in, like "Does this go with this"? Just agree and never deviate from a solid "Yes babe, you look amazing" answer.
My next 'job' is to choose between a nude or red lipstick for each outfit. Why? God knows. What do I know...again she already knows the correct answer so be aware of these loaded questions! Here you need to have a few pre-configured answers and boy have I got this shit on lock-down. So here goes "Go for the red babe as it brings out the earthy autumnal tones in your skirt" 1-0 me. Do not give a choice, don't say "they both look great" or "I'm not sure you decide" as both of these comments will lead to further delays and a mood killing atmosphere, which has to be avoided at all costs.
Feed her, as she bites when not fed and get a coffee down her neck because it will speed shit up!
Now for the checklist.
- Memory Cards?
- Enough space on the memory cards?
- Camera batteries charged?
- Spare camera battery?
- Correct lens on camera fitted?
- Accessories for all outfits?
- Money for coffee? (check your own pockets for this!).
- Your magic wand? (because you may have to use it to magic up the perfect lighting and weather scenario)
You are now ready to leave. Be prepared to head back to hers at least once for forgotten items, don't stress, this is normal.
When travelling to the spot where we are taking the photos, what I find best is to keep chat as upbeat and minimal as possible and avoid discussing traffic, weather and especially not that amazing other fashion blogger that always posts fantastic, fun photos.
We arrive at Chelsea embankment and it's cold, wet and cloudy...basically a fashion bloggers nightmare. Finding a calming response to this situation is where I struggle slightly and I'm still playing around with what works best in this scenario because "well it isn't my fault the English weather sucks" or "lets just get on with it and get home" doesn't get a great reaction. *Note to self, next time use the magic wand.
You also NEED to know your girlfriends facial expressions so you can avoid an Alicia Silverstone in Clueless sized strop. If you see the below, its okay, she is just disappointed as we haven't got the perfect photo yet, keep shooting and this will pass.
When taking the photos, be observant. No street lights sprouting from her head, parked cars are the devil unless vintage and pastel coloured and railings are a must! Get the angles wrong and you might find yourself on the receiving end of one of these looks below. This look is deceiving, its seems harmless enough but thats the issue...its the look where she is on the way to a level 10 strop but is holding it back (for the sake of the photos!).
Taking the photos is actually the least stressful part of the mornings roller coaster ride. However it's when Sophie comes over to assess my work that things can go horribly wrong, if there was a digital red pen, she would be all over it. Just take the criticism in your stride, bite your tongue, put your hand in your pocket and squeeze your balls....whatever works for you! Just don't bite back and argue (like I normally do, I just cant help myself!), but if you do you'll be on a one way ticket to a level 10 stare (see image below).
Let me share a little translation for you, as it took me quite a while to figure it out as google translate doesn't have BLOGGER > ENGLISH in its list unfortunately.
When Sophie says "Hey babe, I don't really like any of the photos you just took. Yeah the angle is all wrong, the background isn't blurred enough, the ISO needs changing and what is that piece of chewing gum doing on the floor. It's not your fault though hun, its totally mine".
Sophie actually means "You fucking moron how can you not take 5 good photos of me out of all the ones you just took? Get your arse the the nearest photography course and learn, don't come back until you know what you are doing. It's completely your fault and I hate you right now."
When back home in the warmth, things may have calmed down a bit. I normally get Sophie up around the level 2-6 of pissed off ness' which is manageable. At this point it might be best to leave her and give her some 'me time' for a few hours whilst she can go through the photos we just took. After critiquing our work, most of the time I'll get a text saying "Thanks babe, there are some really good ones from today, you are the best. Some are blurred though and remember angles angles angles. Next time we (she means you) should be more imaginative. x".
She likes to keep me on my toes and for Sophie perfection is everything. I just hope she likes this article and finds the funny side to it, otherwise I might be out of a job #ExInstagramHusband.
A FEW MORE OBSERVATIONS FROM A FASHION BLOGGERS BOYFRIEND
- Holidays are no longer allowed to be called holidays because frankly they are not. They now have to be referred to 'Blogging Trips Abroad'.
- I'm fully responsible for the number of likes her photos get on Instagram because I took it.
- When in a restaurant, food can not be eaten until all the food, plates, cutlery etc have been placed neatly on the table and a birds-eye photo taken.
- Speaking of restaurants, this is what happens when you are at a restaurant during Instagram posting hours.
Watch our first trip away to Thailand over New Year...check out this VLOG below:
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