James Dean Icon Session | Charlottesville Senior Photographer

James Dean Icon Session

James Dean Icon Session | Charlie | FCHS

Every year, I try to come up with an interesting photography concept for my senior spokesmodels. Last year we had color inspired sessions and I was thrilled with the way they turned out! This year I decided to do something different with my 2017 senior models. Each one of them chose a different icon and through out the year, we’ve had sessions based on their icon. We picked photos of that icon and used them as inspiration for our photoshoots. With outfit choices, accessories and hair and make-up we hope to capture the essence of the icon!

I’ve already photographed Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn and am in love with the results! I had to take a break from the icon sessions because my fall was so busy with outdoor senior sessions. Today though, I’m happy to share the third one from the icon series…James Dean!

When Charlie, one of my senior models from Fluvanna County High School, selected James Dean I was so excited! Talk about an icon. His look and style have inspired so many people over the years. I’ve been a fan since high school when I watched Rebel with a Cause!

We made a Pinterest board with the James Dean photos that we liked and then we selected outfits and poses based on that. Here are some of the photos we used for inspiration:

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Charlie had it pretty easy because he didn’t have to sit for an hour getting his makeup done like the girls did! I did have Mary (my amazing hairy stylist) work her magic on his hair though. Charlie, I swear you should wear your hair like this every day…it looks fantastic!

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Are you kidding me?! Charlie, you look so incredible! I swear it looks like you stepped out of 1955!

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Many people don’t know that James Dean wore glasses but he sure did. In high school, I had a photo of him with glasses on plastered on one of my notebooks!

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I think it’s so awesome that James Dean played a brooding loner in a lot of his movies but he also had an awesome sense of humor too! This photo is a little different that the one we saved but I still love it!

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For the last photos of the session, I wanted to try low key lighting. They ended up being some of my absolutely favorites!

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This leather jacket belonged to my father. He gave it to me and I wore it in high school. It was the perfect addition to the session!

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Thanks so much for a wonderful afternoon Charlie. You absolutely captured the essence of James Dean! Another gigantic thanks to Mary, I couldn’t have done it with out you! Stay tuned for the more icon sessions through out the school year. I have Taylor Swift, Katy Perry & Beyonce coming up in the next few weeks!

CLASS of 2017 – My spring schedule is almost full! Have you scheduled your portrait session yet? For more info click here or contact me! | 434.906.0418 | photos@alijohnson.com

Ali Johnson is a portrait photographer specializing in senior portrait photography in Charlottesville, Crozet, Keswick, Albemarle and Fluvanna County VA

Caleb | Western Albemarle High School – 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Senior portraits Charlottesville

Caleb | WAHS | 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Tonight on my blog we have Caleb, a senior from Western Albemarle High School’s Class of 2017. Before Caleb’s session, I had a phone consultation with his mother Ginger. We went over possible session locations and clothing choices. It also gave me the opportunity to find out a little bit about Caleb’s interests and hobbies. Among other things, he is an Eagle Scout, loves to off shore fish and has worked at Pollack Vineyard for the past three years. Much as I would have loved to incorporate deep sea fishing into the session, we decided to stick to the vineyard.

I’d never been to Pollack Vineyards before but it was gorgeous! Mountain views, a pond, interesting outbuildings, and of course the actual vineyard itself. Since Caleb works there were we pretty much able to have access to the whole place. There was so much variety…it was awesome!

Thanks for a fantastic afternoon Caleb & Ginger! Caleb, you were so laid back and easy to photograph; I really enjoyed spending the afternoon with you! Enjoy the rest of your senior year and good luck at Christopher Newport University!

CLASS of 2018 – Have you applied to be an AJP senior spokesmodel yet? Find out all the details here!

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Since going deep sea fishing wasn’t an option, this was a little nod towards one of Caleb’s favorite things to do!

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CLASS of 2017 – Have you scheduled your portrait session yet? My Spring calendar is already filling up! For more info click here or contact me! | 434.906.0418 | photos@alijohnson.com

Ali Johnson is a portrait photographer specializing in senior portraits in Charlottesville, Crozet, Keswick, Albemarle and Fluvanna County VA

Aurora & Savannah | FCHS – Class of 2017 – Charlottesville Senior Portraits

Charlottesville Senior Portraits

Aurora & Savannah | FCHS | 2017 – Charlottesville Senior Portraits

Tonight on my blog we have Aurora & Savannah, two of my senior spokesmodels from Fluvanna County High School’s Class of 2017. Between my busy schedule and theirs, we had the hardest time getting them in front of the camera! A few days before Christmas, we had a break in the cold weather so I got the two of them together for a mini-session. After they had their make-up done, we headed over to Food Lion. Now before you think I’m crazy, just hear me out! A few days earlier, I was driving around looking for interesting locations when I drove past the Food Lion. Behind the store there was this really cool , weathered retaining wall. I thought it would be a great place for a few photographs and Aurora & Savannah were down to give it a try!

When we got there, we also found a truck parked in the loading dock and a set of stairs we could use. It was perfect! Because we going to be changing locations so quickly, I decided to shoot these photos using only natural light. That may not seem like a big deal to some of you but I use my lights during every single session so it’s really rare for me! One of the benefits about using natural light is the incredible catchlights you can get in your subjects eyes. Aurora and Savannah have beautiful eyes on their own but with natural light and a reflector? They looked over to top gorgeous!

We then drove over to Lake Monticello Rescue Squad. Another unusual location, I know but I’d spied a interesting looking place behind their parking lot. The sun was starting to set and it turned all of the dead grass and trees the most beautiful orange color…Aurora & Savannah looked fabulous! At the end of the session we headed back to my neighborhood for a few shots in the pine trees. Last but not not least, the girls pulled out their Christmas sweaters for one of the cutest shots I’ve ever taken! I had SO much fun with you Aurora & Savanna! You guys made the afternoon an absolute blast and I can’t wait for your next sessions!

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Yep, these were shot beside a Food Lion truck! Sometimes you just gotta step outside the box and try a crazy idea! 🙂

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Aurora is always happy and smiling so serious photos aren’t really her thing. I always take a few though. Can you blame me when she looks like this? Aurora you are stunning!!

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We’d been talking about taking this photo of Savanna with her fur hood for months. So glad we finally had the chance to shoot it. Savanna, you look absolutely amazing!!

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CLASS of 2017 – Have you scheduled your portrait session yet? My Spring calendar is already filling up! For more info click here or contact me! | 434.906.0418 | photos@alijohnson.com

Ali Johnson is a portrait photographer specializing in senior portraits in Charlottesville, Crozet, Keswick, Albemarle and Fluvanna County VA

Grace | Goochland High School – 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Grace | GHS | 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Tonight on my blog we have Grace, my senior spokesmodels from Goochland High School’s Class of 2017. I always have so much fun photographing Grace! She is one of the most laid back, easy going people I’ve ever dealt with and she’s always up for anything!

We had her session in downtown Charlottesville. I love all kinds of sessions but urban senior portraits are my favorite because two of them are never the same!! You never know when you’re going to find an awesome brick wall covered with ivy or an alley that you’ve never noticed before. Both of which happened during Grace’s session! We finished up her session at the IX Art Park  to take advantage of the incredible graffiti. I loved the new addition of “Lead with Love”…that’s some seriously good advice!  Thanks for another fabulous session Grace. I look forward to the next time…including your Gwen Stefani Icon Session!

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CLASS of 2017 – Have you scheduled your portrait session yet? My Spring calendar is already filling up! For more info click here or contact me! | 434.906.0418 | photos@alijohnson.com

Ali Johnson is a portrait photographer specializing in senior portraits in Charlottesville, Crozet, Keswick, Albemarle and Fluvanna County VA

Matt | FCHS – Class of 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Senior Portraits Charlottesville

Matt | FCHS | 2017 – Senior Portraits Charlottesville

I hope everyone is having a wonderful New Year! This fall was my busiest season ever and I am honored that so many people have chosen me to take their senior portraits in the Charlottesville area!

Tonight on my blog we have Matt, one of my senior spokesmodels from Fluvanna County High School’s Class of 2017. Matt is so awesome in front of the camera, seriously it’s like working with a real GQ model!! 🙂 I love his serious model stare so much, that it’s a struggle to remember to tell him to smile!

We had his session in downtown Palmyra area. I love that within this small location, I can get so many different looks out of a session. We were in the middle of the County but managed to get a little of a natural and a little of an urban feel to the photos. It was the perfect combination with Matt’s awesome style. Thanks for another fabulous session Matt…I look forward to the next time! Especially your John Mayer Icon Session!

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CLASS of 2017 – Have you scheduled your portrait session yet? My Spring calendar is already filling up! For more info click here or contact me! | 434.906.0418 | photos@alijohnson.com

Ali Johnson is a portrait photographer specializing in senior portraits in Charlottesville, Crozet, Keswick, Albemarle and Fluvanna County VA

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