Behind Beauty Photography: Shiksona’s Summer Lipstick Campaign

Abigail Lague
January 27, 2024
5 min read

When Shiksona Beauty approached me about a creative summer-themed shoot for their new colorful line of lipsticks, I was ecstatic. Beauty photography is one of my passions, and a shoot with Shiksona always ends up on my “OMG I can’t believe I actually did this!” list. 

So, how did we bring the summer sun to Shiksona’s lipsticks while utilizing indoor studio lighting? 

With some creative studio design! 

A seamless blue paper backdrop, some turf grass, and beach balls set the scene, while orange gels covering the flash created a warm sunset-like light. We also made sure to use harsher lighting to create stronger shadows to really mimic that summer sun.

And let’s not forget five amazing models to bring it all to life! 

So, what is it about beauty photography that is so exciting for me? It’s deceptively hard. 

The pictures are meant to be clean, simple, and eye-catching – but between the studio lighting, wardrobe and makeup changes, working with everyone on set, and complicated post-processing, beauty photography has always been one of the harder types of shoots to knock out of the park. 

With all that in mind...

What makes a successful beauty shoot? 

1. Mastery of Lighting:

The cornerstone of any remarkable beauty photograph lies in the photographer's mastery of lighting. Whether it's the soft glow of natural light or the controlled precision of studio lighting, understanding how light interacts with the subject's features is crucial. Shadows and highlights play a pivotal role in sculpting the face, emphasizing contours, and creating a captivating interplay of light and shadow.

2. Expressions and Emotion:

Beyond perfecting the technical aspects, good beauty photography captures emotion and expression. The photographer should know how to evoke genuine feelings from the subject, resulting in images that transcend the superficial. Whether it's a subtle smile, a confident gaze, or a reflective moment, the ability to convey emotion adds depth and authenticity to beauty portraits.

3. Attention to Detail:

The devil is in the details, and this holds true in beauty photography. From meticulous hair styling and makeup application to the careful selection of accessories, every element contributes to the overall aesthetic. Detail-oriented photographers ensure that every aspect of the image, from the texture of the skin to the sparkle in the eyes, is flawlessly captured.

4. Post-Processing Expertise:

Post-processing is the digital darkroom of beauty photography. Skilled photographers use editing techniques to enhance colors, refine skin tones, and polish the overall aesthetic. However, a delicate balance must be maintained – post-processing should enhance the natural beauty of the subject without veering into artificiality.

As I said, beauty photography is deceptively simple. 

It’s also the most rewarding, and the most fun!

Learn More
Abigail Lague
Founder, Flaire Photography

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The Danish Ambassador presenting Congressman Hoyer with Knight’s Cross of the First Order of Dannebrog.

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If someone is accepting an award, make sure to get photos of their family members clapping. When two VIPs arrive, document the handshake. Watch the expressions of guests when they speak to each other. Capture the smiles (and for god’s sake, don’t photograph people when they’re eating).

Congressman Hoyer's wife after receiving "thanks" in his acceptance speech.

When I arrived at the embassy, the first question I asked my contact was “Who are the event VIPs?” and “Are there any must-have photos I don’t know about yet?”. 

And that’s how I learned that Wes Moore, the governor of Maryland was attending and would be giving a speech in honor of Congressman Hoyer. 

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Governor Moore greeting the Danish Ambassador
The Governor of Maryland, the First Lady of Maryland, and Congressman Hoyer

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Canvas Rebel Feature: Meet Abigail

Last month we were so excited for our owner and founder, Abigail Lague, to be featured in an article for Canvas Rebel! The article explored the reality of starting a business, and what it's like to work as a full-time photographer.

Check out a short snippet below: 

"Hi Abigail, thanks for joining us today. Earning a full time living from one’s creative career can be incredibly difficult. Have you been able to do so and if so, can you share some of the key parts of your journey and any important advice or lessons that might help creatives who haven’t been able to yet?"

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By moving away from a personal brand, I separated myself from the many wedding photographers in the area. I also wanted to demonstrate to corporate and commercial clients that this wasn’t just a solo operation anymore. I had a team of photographers I trusted to assist and lead their own shoots.

I started taking myself, and my brand, more seriously. And it paid off.

Within the first three months, we worked with two senators and a governor. We’ve also started regularly booking branding and event shoots with companies bringing in over $20M yearly.

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It was a long and hard journey, but it was worth it.

Check out the full article here! 

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