“Annie”

Model: Reese Johnston
Hair and Makeup: Gillian Perkins
Location: Keely K. Studios
Assistant: Rennell JohnstonIn case you missed what the project is all about… “This year, I will be undertaking a year-long personal project through the studio. The challenge is to take a portrait every month of a character from a Broadway musical. It’s going to be a great way to try out some new techniques and editing styles, as well as collaborate with new people and local businesses. The goal is not to replicate a scene from the play or film, but to create a unique portrait that represents the character and their story.”
“It’s the hard-knock life for us!” “Cotton blankets, steada wool!” “Once a day don’t you wanna throw the towel in?” “When I’m stuck with a day that’s grey and lonely, I just stick out my chin, and grin, and say… the sun’ll come out tomorrow!”
The character of Annie is one of determination, hope, and optimism in the midst of dismal and harsh circumstances. She refuses to give up hope that her parents will come and take her home from the orphanage in which she lives. But not only does she cling fast to this hope, she also spreads her hopefulness and joy to everyone around her. Her courage and determination make her our hero, her hope draws her close to our heart. (I’m starting to think that unfailing hopefulness might end up being a recurring theme for the characters I choose to feature… Hmmm….)I had the perfect team to make this character a reality. The star of the image is little 8 year-old Reese. She had the perfect amount of spunk to pull off the perfect little Annie attitude. The whole time we were shooting (and for the last few weeks, in fact) I’ve had the lyrics to “It’s a Hard Knock Life” running through my head. She made the heart of the scene come to life. Also, I’ve got to put a huge shout-out to Reese’s mom Rennell who was SO helpful pulling together props and clothes to help out with the shoot. She was awesome and so eager to help. Thank you Rennell!!! And of course, Gillian, who played the amazing hair wizard. Reese is a natural blonde with waist-long hair. Gillian dyed, curled, and teased it into the amazing red mane that you see here. Sweetness. Sometimes the best locations happen to be right outside your front door. Those of you who have been to the studio will probably recognize the “orphanage” as literally right outside the front door of Keely K. Studios. Fancy that!Thank you for reading, we would love to hear your thoughts, and hope that you stay tuned for next month’s installment…

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A before…
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…and after.
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