Saturday, November 1, 2014

DIY: Feature in Nashville Arts Magazine!

Do you guys even know how hard it is for me to keep a secret? It's so difficult, in fact, that upon befriending someone, I usually have to have what I deem a super serious (meanwhile, they foolishly think I'm joking) convo about how they should never, never ever, tell me anything they don't wish for at least football stadium of folks to know. So when I was asked by Nashville Arts Magazine to keep my lil photo shoot/article under wraps, I nearly had to bust out the masking tape and seal my lips shut. 

Okay, I take that back. They didn't actually say I had to keep it quiet but I kinda decided that I should. I mean, what if the photo shoot went all horribly wrong and I ended up looking like the big ole goof that I am? OR, worse, what if my interview went so badly that I had to search and destroy all copies of the November issue of Nashville Arts? 

By the way, I know the copy is tough to read but if you go here, you can view it much better. 

Thankfully, none of that happened...which is all due to the wonderful folks at Nashville Arts Magazine. I had so much fun chatting and sipping tea with MiChelle Jones, the author of the article. And Juan Pont Lezica was just the best photographer ever. He had a vision for the layout of the photographs and did such a great job leading and directing my (completely inadequate) modeling. 
So just how did all this come about? Well, it seems that way back when I created my first Kandinsky dress, The Frist Center for Visual Arts shared it on Twitter (so, does that mean they "tweeted" it? Y'all, hep me. I'm reopening my Twitter account [deets to come] and I feel so lost. You guyzzz, I'm too old for this!). That's when Paul Polycarpou, the editor of Nashville Arts Magazine emailed me and said they'd like to chat with me about a feature. And I was all, whuuuuuuht?! I mean, y'all. I create these dresses to wear in my art room, to share with my students and the 5 people that read this blog (thank you, 5 people!). When I've picked up issues of Nashville Arts Magazine in the past (it's a beautiful magazine, friends. From the layout to the articles and the photographs, it's all visually stunning), I often thought, "maybe one day when I get back to creating art, I'll see my work in here." Little did I know that I've been creating art all along, just the wearable kind. It was so truly flattering for Paul to notice this and want to share it in Nashville Arts.

The interview with MiChelle was so much fun. Just like chatting with an old friend. The interview took place in my packed-with-fabric sewing room and it was so comfortable and easy. The following week, I had my photo shoot which had me just a pinch freaked out. Especially when I was asked, "will you be bringing your own hair and make up-people?" to which I replied, "Um. My what?"
So after a day of art teacherin', I drove my car full of clothes, lipsticks and hairspray to downtown Nashville for the shoot. Juan Pont Lezica was super nice and patient and, thankfully, had a vision for the photo shoot. Which was great cuz I had nuthin. Now, I don't know if y'all know this, but I take my own photos for my blog. Hubs got me a remote control clicker and I just set up my tripod and snap away. I have my three set poses (that if you scroll through my previous posts, you'll begin to see over and over and ohhh-verrr): 1. Hand on hip(s), 3/4 angle pose (lawd knows one never ever faces a camera head-on); 2. Weight on one leg, bend the other. Look off to the side, always with head down, never up (don't nobody wanna see that much chin/neck); 3. Smile. Because when I don't smile, them my BRF flares up. 

Well, apparently those are just my own made up rules. Juan helped me to loosen up and try new poses that I wouldn't normally attempt...and I was pretty happy with the result.

Although you can't see it, this here is the Keith Haring number. You can read all about it here
So glad I thought to perform my biweekly shave-up-to-my-kneecaps the eve before the shoot. 
Kandinsky Concentric Circles Dress here, my first Kandinsky dress here and details on my felted Starry Night light-up number here
We managed to get through the photo shoot in just under three hours. Because I didn't want to take forever between photos, I simply altered my makeup slightly (adding more eye make up and changing out my lip color as the shoot wore on). I was surprised how well my normally non-cooperative hair worked for me. 
Campbell's Soup Dress after Warhol here, Munch's The Scream felted mayhem here and Hokusai's appliquéd Great Wave dress here
And there you have it. My attempt at being Fierce/Excited/Sullen/Angst-y just like I learned from Tyra watching all those ANTM episodes years ago. Thanks, T!
Added bonus about NashvilleArts: It's free! You can find copies throughout Nashville and the surrounding communities. 
I was able to get a sneak peak at the magazine on Wednesday when Rebecca Pierce, a writer for the magazine, dropped by my house. She and I are working on an upcoming column I'll be writing for Nashville Arts! I'm so excited about this, I cannot wait to share more details with you. I'm going to be needing your help with this, so stay tuned, friends!
Just what the real spread looks like. It's super trip-y to see, y'all!
Don't you worry, T-Banks, don't you worry!

Until next time, y'all!

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22 comments:

  1. Wow is all I can say. You look stunning and you should feel very proud of the recognition you received for your hard-work, passion and most of all... talent! Congratulations!

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  2. That's so cool Cassie! It's so nice to see artists/teachers getting the recognition they deserve - the pics look fantastic :)

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  3. Awesome! Congratulations! I really need to learn how to felt, I totally want to make my own impressionist dresses. Le sigh! Never enough time to learn all the crafts.

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  4. Awesome! How exciting! And well deserved. I love seeing all your creations and they are pretty hardcore amazing efforts, so I'm glad someone out there caught on and had the idea to share you with the wider, non-internet world. Congrats!

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  5. That is so exciting!!! It's great to hear that someone is putting Art Teacher-ing on the map!!! Congrats Cassie. And, it looks like there are more of us followers than 5!!! : )

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  6. Oh my gosh!! That is tremendous!! You are stunning. What a fun opportunity. I love that you say 'when I start making my art'... You ARE art. You are art and creativity through and through. I'm in love with Cassie Stephens (blog and brain) and I don't care who knows it! You deserve every publication you are in. You are a role model and an inspiration. This is well deserved.

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  7. You are the best! I wish you had been my daughter's art teacher.

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  8. I love all of this SO MUCH, SO MUCH! Congrats on being featured. I just found your website and can't wait to look around more!

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  9. Anonymous11/02/2014

    So happy for you, those wonderful creative dresses need to be shown to the world.

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  10. Amazing, Cassie!!! The photo shoot turned out especially fabulous.

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  11. Congrats! You look like a Real Model! ;)

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  12. You rock! Now you are a true celebrity in Nashville.

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  13. Congratulations!!!!! You look fabulous and fun!!! This is so exciting!!!

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  14. How cool is that!!!!!

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  15. This is super awesome! You're certainly making a statement in the art world!

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  16. Truly inspiring! I love reading your blog posts up here in Canada. Congratulations on the magazine article and some well-deserved recognition!

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  17. Very very cool. You must have done a good job of listening to Tyra, because, along with your amazing dresses, you definitely have the 'look' of a fashion model. Tall, slender, good hair and makeup, nice smile, good posture, long legs; in comparison I feel like a slouching hairy meatball, whatever the heck that means. Anyhow, fabulous.

    One thing I want to add - most of those dresses are not only fun art replications, they are also good wearable fashion! I'd definitely pick either one of those marvelous Kandinsky dresses off a rack in the store to buy and wear. If they were in my size.

    Congrats on the fantabulous article to my celebrity friend! You are a superhero for sure!

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  18. OOPS. I forgot the real reason I started to write a comment in the first place, which is this: how do I vote on the costume contest without seeing pictures? Have I missed something somewhere?

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  19. Anonymous7/17/2015

    Hi Cassie! YOU are AMAZING!!! I LUV looking at your posts and you manage to keep a sense of humor with all the things Art teachers have to do....like lunch duty, etc. How do you manage all of it??? Keep up the fantastic work/fun!!!

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  20. Anonymous7/17/2015

    Hi Cassie! YOU are AMAZING!!! I LUV looking at your posts and you manage to keep a sense of humor with all the things Art teachers have to do....like lunch duty, etc. How do you manage all of it??? Keep up the fantastic work/fun!!!

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Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate each and every one :)