Tag Archives: jamie beck

Caroline Ventura

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As an artist there are some people who I LOVE photographing. I could photograph them everyday. There is something about their beauty, bone structure, and spirit I love to capture, that my eye finds fascinating and wants to study them over and over. This is the case for jewelry designer Caroline Ventura who is one of (along with Heather) my muses. I first met Caroline on a shoot for Cup of Jo three years ago and we have been friends ever since. Did you know she was the first cinemagraph we ever shot? We just never tired editing it until AFTER our first public one. She was the first person I photographed at our old studio and this shoot is our first together at our new one.

We are both artists and we have known each other as photographer + subject for sometime now. I’ve shot Caroline beautifully, I’ve shot her COOL, but as we have been getting older we are looking to find more depth in our work. I’ve been wanting to focus less on the clothing in my personal shoots these days and more on the beauty of the female form. Caroline and I were going to meet up for dinner and I said, hey, let’s do a shoot before we head out, which eventually turned into a night of film photographs, margaritas, girl talk, and these moments below.

… and just for fun I asked Caroline a series of fill in the blank questions just for a new take on an old friend.

I am most inspired by…

My friends. I’m so lucky to have an incredible circle of talented friends who all support each other and push one another to do/create beautiful things.

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An ideal day for me is…

When I can see blue skies. As long as the sun is shining, anything can be thrown my way.

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My favorite artist is…

Lia Chavez, who is doing really beautiful things in the art world right now. I am so fortunate to call her a friend. Her solo show, Carceri, just opened at Two Rams on the LES. She is one of the gentlest and most humble humans and a huge inspiration to me.

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The best way I express myself is…

With my mouth. I talk a lot.

Caroline_Ventura_25  New York City is…

Home. No matter where I go in my life it always pulls me back.

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HowAboutWe…

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It’s that time of year, where were we all desperately want 60 degree days and to see the color green again fill our parks… but alas, here we are, soon the snow will begin falling quietly outside. The mother of a friend taught me something new recently that I have been trying to live by since my recent transformation: “Make it fun”. We all get stuck in situations that are not ideal (like winter) and instead of being negative about it, find a way to make it fun!

A couple of weekends ago Kevin used HowAboutWe for Couples to turn these last few winter days into a fun memory of the season with a romantic snow-covered mountain horseback ride! I’m beside myself with excitement waiting for the next season of Game of Thrones to begin so it was quite fun being a couple hours outside the city in complete silence pretending I was Khaleesi. You know I love horseback riding…I love seeing the world from a slightly higher perspective, watching winter’s angular shadows dance by as if they were the ballerina legs of nature.

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Ari Dein

AriDein_01 Recently I’ve been really getting into lingerie: not crazy garter corset items, but wearable everyday pieces that feel and look amazing. I start with sets for the daytime and end with beautiful slips at night. When I stopped by the CFDA’s Incubator space to interview the designers behind Timo Weiland this past NYFW, I ran into Arielle Shapiro – the New York-born, former ballerina designer behind the line Ari Dein. It was like instant love. Her pieces are made to be wearable, flattering and feminine. It’s no wonder brands like Carolina Herrera have brought her on to design capsule collections for them. I was so thrilled when she made her fall line available for me to photograph exclusively at the studio and sat her down to get the story on how she went from working for other designers to starting her own line of lingerie….

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What do you think it is about lingerie that inspires confidence in women?

I think, to me, fashion creates clothing that allows women to change their entire sensibility about themselves. You put on a dress and you’ve become something, a certain style or character.

Lingerie helps you accept and embrace who you are because it’s something that only you know about. And because the fit is so crucial, the size becomes about loving your body. No one ever says, “Oh, I wish I had this size band…” It’s the Holy Grail when you find something that fits, and the fit changes how you feel about yourself.

I think there’s something modest about lingerie, actually. It’s a private thing, something only you know about…but then if someone else is going to see it, you’re prepared and they’re lucky.

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Personal Style

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Over the past year, I’ve been going through a minimalistic phase, simplifying as much of my life as possible, including my beauty routine and wardrobe. Less is more right? When reading Steve Job’s biography, I really loved the idea of a uniform. As much as I love fashion, I love photography more and I want all of my time and energy to go into that, not picking out my outfit. So this transformation of simplification has begun and it feels really, really good.

This what I have found is important to me in this new phase of my personal style:

1. Buy less and save for quality. That item, whatever it may be, lasts longer, feels amazing, fits perfectly, makes you feel confident wearing it and is made of high quality fabrics. Even if you can’t afford these pieces new, there are sites such as LXR & Co. that sell luxury items on consignment at a fraction of the cost. I got my travel Hermes backpack that I LOOOOOVE here and a new Chanel watch for my birthday (above)!

2. Classic never goes out of style. I mean, obvi.

3. Shop conscientiously. I *love* companies like Obakki, whose philanthropic counterpart is a registered charity that focuses on providing clean water and education in Africa.  I also love FEED - with every purchase, you feed a certain number of school kids in Africa. Then there is MAIYET, a pioneering luxury brand that “incorporates rare artisan skills from unexpected places throughout the world, with the goal to promote sustainable employment in places that need it most.” I love my basic MAIYET white shirt dress and gold cuff. These things not only look good but make you feel good about wearing them and telling people about the brand because you believe in what they are doing with your money.

4. K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple Stupid. I was very inspired by Cuyana’s lean closet initiative that “challenges us to collect fewer, better things, and to donate the pieces in our wardrobes that are merely taking up space to those who need them”. Simplifying your closet and ultimately your life feels so good, and it gives you more time to focus on things that really matter.

5. Stay fresh faced. I used to wear a lot of makeup. Even though I’ve been living in New York for 11 years now, it took a while to shake my Texas roots and ideals of beauty. I realized last year in Paris I have been spending all this time “putting on my face” when really, it’s not the makeup that makes someone pretty. I have reduced my beauty routine to Restorsea face cream, sometimes mascara, bronzer, and lipstick. That’s it. 2 mins. Boom.

Recently, we were shooting a beauty story for Joanna Goddard’s blog, Cup of Jo. It was such an amazing group of women who came together, talking, taking photographs, and sharing beauty tips. Courtney, who was just as beautiful barefaced as with makeup on, told me about a documentary called Miss Representation about the way women are viewed in the media and how that makes us view ourselves. At one point in the documentary the point is made that every time you look in the mirror, you should imagine there is a little girl standing there hearing what you are saying to yourself. Horrid right?! I told Kevin there has not been a day in my life that I have not looked at myself in the mirror getting dressed and thought “if I could just lose 10 lbs…”

And now I have to ask myself why? For what? For who? What am I judging my body against that I would say that to myself? So these may be the articles of clothing I wrap around my body to move in and out of the day, but now when I get dressed I don’t tell myself I need to lose weight, I think about the things I like, that I feel fortunate to have. It’s not only a physical makeover but a mental one. So here are my new classics and it feels really, really good on the inside and out.

Above cover photo, the basic black turtleneck. I can thrown it on with jeans and get to work and then change into a pencil skirt and go out to dinner, so versatile that I live in these! 

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Tibi Agathe Jumpsuit: it looks like a dress but it’s pants! Plus it has super clean lines and amazing pockets. And as we know, Tibi also travels very well: Brazil & Paris

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