Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Rainy Day Engagement Shoot. . . Lawyers in Love

It began as a beautiful SEC-football filled Saturday.  I should have guessed it would turn rainy when the Gamecocks of SC beat my beloved UGA Bulldogs.

However, that didn't dampen the spirits of the prep and party that was happening at a sweet urban loft on Charleston's King Street.  Heather and Tim were in from Pittsburgh, and enjoying a lovely visit to Charleston to wrap up some pre-wedding planning.  Including their engagement photo session with the divine Kim Graham.

One of Kim's many virtues is how she gets to know her clients.  She knew Heather and Tim's epicurean love of food and wine.  And that's what led to these series of photos.  As soon as I saw them, I was awed.  I left Heather that Saturday afternoon, and thought of her when the rain started pitter-pattering down.  I never imagined that Kim would harness the rain to her advantage.  But, as you can see, what she got was a very grown-up, sensory, and in my mind, sexy day.

Tonight, when I have my glass of red,  I'll toast these lovely people. . . Heather & Tim and their wonderful taste in photographers.

Wedding prep courtesy of the equally epicurean Luke Wilson Special Events. (Thanks, sweet Megan!)

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Apple Doesn't Fall Too Far From Her Tree

I want to gush.  You know, go on and on, but perhaps it's best to keep it simple.  

Emily was one of those brides:

Gorgeous to the point of being just nearly flawless
One of the best mama's girls I've come across.

However, this Daddy picture says a lot, too :)

It was a joy to work with this family.  
Peace, love, and blessings to you all.

Hair by

Makeup by

Photography by

On location at

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Big Time. In the Big Apple. A Dream Realized.

David working backstage at CMV's Fall Fashion Week Show
Backstage Makeup Area
Romero Jennings' Face Chart & Makeup Design for the CMV show
I love this. . . Romero's detailed plan on back of face chart
I really try to keep my braggart moments to a minimum.  But this only counts as a brag in the sense that it's trumpeting the company I keep.  And I must say that one of my biggest sources of personal pride is that I have a knack for keeping company with top shelf folk ;)

My best man friend, David, is the source of my inspiration today.  David is MAC's Southeastern trainer.  That means he trains all new makeup artists for MAC, as well as certifies and keeps all existing artists current in new MAC product and trends.  He attends "Train the Trainer" which is an international meeting of all the greatest minds of MAC (artistic and business).  And he does soooo much more.  Without going on and on, which I could easily do, suffice it to say, David possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of all things MAC and all things MAKEUP.

So, here's the condensed version of the long story I'd love to tell: David got a phone call from the one and only "Romero."  (Romero Jennings is the MAC Senior Artist who had been contracted by fashion designer Carmen Marc Valvo to do makeup for the models for his Spring 2011 show.  In New York.  At Lincoln Center.  For NEW YORK FASHION WEEK.)  Romero hand-picked his team of MAC artists, and called David to recruit him for this effort.  In the world of makeup artistry, particularly beauty and fashion makeup, this is a holy grail. . . to work backstage makeup for the uber-designers and models. . . a dream realized!  Kudos to Romero for a successful Fashion Week and having made the sage decision to include David Huebner!

David, I cherish you: the artist and the person.  You so deserved this.  MAC, and particularly your Southeast artists, are so fortunate to have you and your beautiful mind.  You inspire me daily, and I'm proud to call you friend and rejoice in your accomplishments.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Chloe was a princess bride from the moment I met her for her trial run.  A petite package of style, grace, serenity, and decisiveness, all rolled into one.  She is a true personification of her beautiful name.  Chloe was one of my naturalistas. . . the brides who want softness; "take it up just a half-notch" gals.   She knew from the get-go what she wanted. . . dress, face, venues, and entertainment!  I was struck by the prominence of the music of the day.  I love the recessional from the Confederate Home to Hibernian Hall. . . taking it to the streets, a la New Orleans. Wedding details below. . .  Thank you to Chloe and her wonderful family from NC.

Dress by Reem Acra

Ceremony & champagne reception at Confederate Home, Charleston, SC
Wedding reception at Hibernian Hall, Charleston, SC
Music by Lounge Cat from St. Petersburg, FL
Ashleigh Collins Events, Raleigh, NC
Photo #s 1, 2, 6, and 7 by Priscilla Thomas
Photo #s 3, 4, and 5 by Lee Hickman 
Hair by Tanesha Dupree
Makeup by Pamela Lesch

Monday, October 4, 2010

MTV's Made, "Pageant Queen"

I left my phone in the car this past March when I went into the Harris Teeter.  When I returned, there was a voice mail that said, "Pamela, this is Lee from the MTV offices in New York.  I'm a producer for the show 'Made'. . ."  My little mental voice asked, "is this really Ashton. . . and was I being Punk'd?  And so it began.

Understand, I'm a child of the 80s, when MTV was everything music-video.  So, in my karmic world, an old love was coming back around.  MTV???  Really???

My assignment: to transform the face of one female lacrosse-playing superstar at Wando High School into that of a rocker-chick.  Thoughts of Pat Benatar, Patty Smith, and Joan Jett came to mind.  I called my friend and fellow music-junkie Terry. . . "may I practice on you."  She came over in an instant.  On went the face, then came the smear of eyes and lips with the back of my hand.  Voila!  Look created.

The episode aired last Friday, October 1, and is titled "Pageant Queen."  Although my part in this process focused on the Rocker Chick photo shoot, it was an amazing experience to play a small part in this.  And I had a 2-second appearance on the show. . . AND my name appeared in the credits :)

Heartfelt thank yous:
Terry Tongate Ward for being my practice canvas and conferring with me on "rocker chic";
Lee and MaryKate at MTV;
Page Fortuna for being the beautiful girl (inside and out) and amazing WHS team mate you are;
Kenneth @ Carolina Model Project for the "formal" photo shoot;
Anna Welen, and the team from the Paul Mitchell School in Columbia; for the faux-hawk hair, and the behind-the-scenes photos.

All makeup by MAC. . . love those feather #42 lashes!!!