I recreated Disney Princesses as Badass Women
What's something different? Something new? Something FUN? These were all questions I asked myself daily while scrolling by post after post of different music promotion. "Hey guys, Check out my new single!". OR "Here's a picture of me staring at a lake, download my song." It was the same old images done over hundreds of times, by hopeful young artists to capture your attention. But I wanted to do something different.
Music will always be my first love, but I am also a very visual person, (although I can't draw to save my life), I can PICTURE good art and images in my head. In my opinion, the Single art, and promotional images that go hand in hand with the song, are just as important as the music you hear. The images tell a story, and the art evokes emotion.
My song Believer was just finished being produced, so here was my chance to create awesome images to go along with the song. But what would work?
For context, Believer is a song I co-wrote for one of my sisters Gabby.
(Craig Lackey and Julia Battistin are co-writers on the song) <-- (check out their music! )
Gabby is a few years younger than me and someone who always inspires me. No joke. She's a Badass 25-year-old female who is not only a Dental School student, but she is in the Navy! In addition, she is also the President of her school's ASDA chapter. The list of her accomplishments would probably take up this whole page. The lyrics of the song tell a story of a girl who won't back down and believes in herself.
Watch her go, see her fly
Over the rainbow in the sky
With all her courage, all her heart, and her mind
You know when you meet her, the world's gonna see her, you better believe her
She's a Believer
Gabby also LOVES anything Disney. Cinderella happens to be her favorite.
So with that in mind, I thought "what could I do with my music promotion to make it different, use my love of art to create something special, and attribute it all back to Gabby?
Then it hit me "DISNEY PRINCESSES AS BADASS WOMEN." - I would do a themed photoshoot of Disney Princesses as Badass women.
Now that I had my idea, I needed to get started on planning. I first found a photographer. I decided to go with Sara Elizabeth of Pixiedust Photography
I mean even her photo business name was perfect, it was meant to be.
Princess 1: Cinderella
Sara and I met for coffee and discussed the plan. We first started by listing out attributes to each princess, and pairing them with a career. We started with Cinderella. Cinderella (like my sister) is hardworking, patient, and kind. Because of her combination of attributes we thought the perfect career for her would be a Medical Professional.
Next was finding the clothing. I decided to do a basic blue scrubs outfit for Cinderella. I also purchased some cute white keds (Cinderella is also stylish). Accessories included a black choker with a diamond heart, a thin blue headband, and a stethoscope. Of course, we couldn't forget the high bun! I have blonde hair, so it was pretty easy to style the hair and makeup for this look.
Location and props:
Finally, we needed location and PROPS! We tried to find the outside of a hospital with the big-red EMERGENCY sign in the background, but everywhere either had construction going on, or it was the middle of a pandemic, and we felt a little weird being so close to a hospital taking photos. We eventually found some cool red-brick on the side of a parking garage There was even a little tree and some grass, so we could take some nice scenery photos. For props, we decided on a basic orange pumpkin. It matched the scenery and was relevant to the Cinderella story. Lastly, we tried to find a set of stairs...Cinderella needed to have a picture with a lost shoe while she running between shifts at the hospital! This task was IMPOSSIBLE, but we were finally able to find a set that belonged to the Erie Art Museum. I think they turned out pretty well :)
Princess 2: Belle
The second princess we decided to go with was Belle from Beauty and the Beast. First of all, Belle LOVES to read, and really the only profession I could think of that reads a lot is a Lawyer. In addition to Belle "speaking her mind", being independent, and wanting more than "this provincial life" a lawyer seemed like the perfect career path for Belle.
Did somebody say Belle Woods?
For Belles outfit, I had two choices, from her blue and white outfit in the beginning to her famous yellow dress during the dance scene. While both outfits were good choices, I decided to go with the famous yellow dress, since it's such a pivotal point of the film. I went with a sleek yellow business bodycon dress, white stilettos heels, a set of pearls, and of course a big brunette wig to top it off. I got my makeup done for this shoot and went with the wonderful Cassie Rapela, who did a bold yellow eyeshadow look with enormous false lashes.
Location and Props:
We decided on a few props for Belle. An iconic piece of the Belle story is the rose. We raided the local Dollar Store and found a super cute Rose Pen (pictured above), a fake rose, some legal pads, a binder, and a book. For the location, we of course went to the Erie Country Courthouse. Not only was it deserted for being closed (Labor Day), but it has beautiful tall white pillars that would go perfect for the backdrop. Again, I think these turned out amazing!
Princess 3: Ariel
Saving the best for last, was my favorite princess, Ariel. The first song I ever sang in a school talent show was "Part of Your World". Ariel had three awesome traits, she was Curious, Rebellious, and Brave. (Traits I see in myself). Since, I connected with Ariel the most, (and she was my favorite Disney princess), I wanted her to be like me, so I decided on Ariel: The Rocker Chick! My music is not Rock, but come on, wouldn't you love to see Ariel rocking out to some head-banging screamo rock? We've all seen that Hipster Ariel meme. It was perfect
Ariel's outfit was my favorite to style. I legit bought mostly everything from DOLLS KILL. I first found a light purple sea-shell bathing suit top. I had to buy the whole swimsuit, but of course, I'll wear it again! I then found a lime-green high-waisted tight mini skirt. To top it off I went with a glittery blouse from Windsor and white heeled ankle boots from Amazon. Also, you CANNOT forget the ICONIC wig from Amazon. Ariel is a serious artist now, so I had to get that long crazy hair like Beyonce. It was bright red and had some grown out black roots to add realness to the style.
Location and Props:
We wanted to take photos as though Ariel was performing for a show. Luckily Sara's boyfriend Jason had a connection to a local arts venue in Erie, PA called PACA: The Performing Arts Collective Alliance PACA is an amazing arts space housed in a 120-year old 4 story building. The place is filled with unique filled rooms, art galleries, and performance spaces. From PACA's website "PACA - Erie's Performing Arts Collective Alliance - is an uncommon non-profit. Our mission has been to create self-sustaining and taxpaying art and education-based public entity in our community, and we are succeeding. " (To Donate to PACA please click above.)
Jason is also a light tech in Erie and brought his amazing lights and fog machine setup. We looked like a real show (Thanks Jason!) (Jason Oshlick is his full name)
Note: Sara and Jason have a band together called Alone at Midnight, check out their music!
In addition to the gadgets and gizmos filling the room of PACA, we used a Gold Microphone and 6-string bass to tie the entire act together. The result was these BEAUTIFUL photos of what looks to be like Ariel performing to a sold-out show. Again, these are AMAZING photos!!
Overall, this shoot, this song, and this idea took a lot of work and a lot of creative people. Every detail, mind, and story was equally important in creating this vision, and I want to thank you all immensely. Please check out their music, photos, and creative ventures. I hope you enjoy these photos as much as I do, and I hope you give the song a listen.
Till next time,