Tag Archives: photoshoot

Purina Photoshoot

13 Jul

When I first learned that Randy Schwartz Photography was casting young mothers for a Purina print ad photoshoot, I wasn’t sure if I fit the description, but decided to submit myself anyway with hopes of having the opportunity to audition. The role description specified that applicants be animal lovers and have no allergies or fear of cat or dogs. About a week after I submitted myself I received a request to audition. They noted in the email that we come in dressed in our favorite outfit to bring out our true personality. The audition happened on May 18th at their Torrance studio, quite a far drive from home. I came in and saw two tall and beautiful models in there and thought to myself, “Uh-oh. I don’t think I stand a chance.” My hopes went up after they told us that we were going to be photographed with Buddy, the photographer’s 14 1/2-year-old yellow Labrador. Having had a significant amount of experience with my own dog who is a yellow Labrador as well, I was no longer nervous, just excited. All we had to do was casually interact with him in front of the green screen while Randy photographed us. Randy was wonderful to work with. He encouraged me and told me to just go with it. When Buddy licked my face and I didn’t pull back, Randy said to me, “Oh, you get plus points for that.” That just made my day and I walked out of the audition like I was floating on air.

About a month passed and I didn’t hear back from them. I figured, oh well, just another job I didn’t get. Regardless, I kept praying for the project and even requested from my mom and dad that they pray for me as well. Then one night as I was casually browsing through my emails, I got a message saying that I had been chosen for the project. I remember shrieking so loudly I scared my boyfriend, who was watching tv in the living room. It was very funny. I also remember jumping up and down like a little girl. I was very excited to have the chance to work with pets on a set.

About two weeks before the shoot date, they had us come back to the studio with our own wardrobe choices so that the stylist can sort through them and figure out what would suit us best. They also provided us with a shot list and sample shots of the kind of photos they were trying to achieve. They noted in the email that the desired style of photography was “editorial” “not staged.” Basically, shots that appeared candid.

The shot that got me through.

The photoshoot happened on Wednesday, July 13th and I, together with a male model, had an 8am call time. I arrived ten minutes before 8am at this beautiful beachfront house in a private gated community in Ranchos Palos Verdes, a city that I didn’t even know existed until that day. The staff was still unloading racks of wardrobe from the vans. I saw a lot of Old Navy clothing. I went out to the patio where they offered me breakfast. There was a caterer on the set and it was abuzz with the crew getting everything ready. I also got to meet the owner of the house who I determined was a doctor based on the medical books that I saw on his bookshelf.

It was certainly a gorgeous day. I enjoyed every minute of it. Chris Wilson, the male model, and I were only scheduled to be there half day as they were shooting another couple in the afternoon. The stylist had each of us wear a fake wedding band to depict us as a real life couple in the photos. We noticed how stinky the cats were. Haha. I was able to work with 3 pets, a Bischon Frise dog named LT and two cats named Diva and Tica (I don’t know their breed). There was a male and female animal trainer on set. I was extremely impressed with how well the animals listened to all of their instructions with the lure of treats. I can only imagine how much training they’ve gone through in their lives!

Here are some pictures from the shoot:

The view of the beach from the parking lot.

The deck facing the beach where we all hung out during the shoot.

Catered food. Yum.

Hair and makeup time!

With Marian Filali, the offical HMUA of the photoshoot. She was super sweet and fun.

I came to the shoot with makeup on already as they had not mentioned in any of the correspondence that there would be a makeup artist on set. Big mistake. I just wasted my time. Oopsie. Marian was okay though with taking it all off. She didn’t mind. I think Marian did a great job with my hair and makeup. Her goal was to simply make me look natural. Right before it was my turn to be photographed she decided to add big curls to my hair because initially she had straightened it. You can learn more about Marian and her work by visiting her website.

Meet LT. She was a very well behaved doggy.

Cat models Tica and Diva.

The real stars of the photoshoot-the animal models!

His turn! Chris Wilson, the male model, pretending to read a book while dog model Tango chews a bone by his feet.

The bed where they shot me and Chris on with dog model LT and cat models Diva and Tica.

I decided to hang out outside for few minutes to enjoy the view before I gathered my things and left.

I stopped by the turnout on the way out to breath some fresh air and take in the view once more.

I have to say that this was the most professional photoshoot I have ever participated in so far. I say that because everything was very well organized and properly coordinated from start to finish. There was a hair and makeup artist on the set, food was abundant and about four members of Purina’s advertising agency were present to make sure that everything went smoothly. Most of all, there was absolutely no attitude from anybody during the photoshoot. It felt like we were just playing around and having fun.

The photos will be used as Purina’s stock photography in the next 3 years for print ads, web images, and such. I imagine it may take a while before they will actually be released. I genuinely hope they turned out well.

And so I drove off with another beautiful memory.

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