Gallery Opening: Pump Me Up at the Corcoran

Last Friday was an intense night for party hopping, with lots of things to shoot! I started my night at the Social Media Week Closing Party (I'll release those photos tomorrow), and then bopped over to the extremely sold out opening party of the Corcoran's new exhibition, Pump Me Up. Detailing the straight edge and go-go movement of the 1980's in DC, the show was as colorful, eclectic and awesome as anticipated. 

The style of the attendees was amazing too - I sailed in in the last 20 minutes of the party and was blown away by how well-dressed everyone was. I photographed a few GoKateShoot favorites, who were making my favorite statements of the evening. Above, performance artist Katie Macyshyn was rocking turquoise and red ombre hair that was to die for, and paired with black rhinestone eye makeup was a strong statement. Read on for more!

Graphic tights are softened by a feminine pink skirt

Models Jackie Okoko and Catherine Pitcher pose with Sheldon Scott - so glad that I'm friends with these sartorial three, they always make such statements!  

Aviator cap? Yes please.

Of course, the stunning Shannon Cusello looks incredible in a graphic print dress

Trend spotting: skinny jersey scarves on men

Dog Days: Armando

For the second installment of the Dog Days style series (check out the first one featuring me HERE), I'm excited to highlight my friend and artist Armando López Bircann. I've photographed him several times for both his personal style and his moving art performances at the Corcoran, but his gallery chic pastels are perfect for summer. His light blood orange sorbet shirt paired with faded denim and mustard shoes are a color palate worth swooning over, for sure! I love the proportions of the shirt and how the sleeves are the same length as the shirt! Add some perfect accessories (hellllllllo purple cocktail ring! Silver bracelet!) and a top knot and he's ready for the summer heat. 

This look is on-trend without being painfully so; it's delightfully laid-back and effortless. Major swoon. Armando's strong sense of personal style is inspiring, so I hope you enjoy!

GoKate Update

Photos taken by Shannon Cusello during this shoot.

I've been brief recently, so let's do a quick GoKate update. I've been shooting more than ever, with intensely interesting projects with my main clients, my fashion section of Washingtonian Magazine and the Corcoran Gallery and School of Art. I am in the midst of shooting a style feature for the September issue of Washingtonian that promises to be inspiring to a wide array of people, and I continue to photograph behind the scenes and student life at the Corcoran as we re-imagine their brand images together. I've been getting a lot of great press, and am excited to have started shooting for the Washington Post and Pinkline Project. You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Additionally, I am transitioning to an exciting new job as the co-Community Manager of Uber, a rocking tech start-up that delivers on-demand private drivers via an app on your phone. Why yes, I'd love to arrive in a town car! The company is creative, dynamic, and will capitalize on my love for all things social media, communications, and marketing. They were in Time! Washington Post! NY Times! TechCrunch! On and on...and I can't wait to work for a company that did on-demand BBQ at SXSW last year. Cool? Abso-freaking-lutely. The job will have me working closely with Alex Priest, who may be the only other person in DC who is more hyper than me, and who I'm good friends with...can't wait to get started! 

And finally, I want to thank all of you for following and being so supportive. I am grateful for the opportunity to make work for love and great clients, and adore our dialogue here, on social media, and in person. 

Oriana and Philippe Go to the Ball

At the Corcoran Ball, I had the pleasure and delight of meeting the lovely Oriana and Philippe. Clad in mint vintage tulle and the perfect suit, this pair blew me away with their chic style and friendliness. We made fast friends and enjoyed much of the Ball together; I took a series of images of them that are my favorites of the whole set. Enjoy!

Looks from the Corcoran Ball

Two weeks ago, I had the unexpected pleasure of photographing the Corcoran Ball, the high-end benefit gala the museum uses to honor their top patrons. This year's guest of honor was His Excellency the Ambassador of France (pictured below), so the entire affair was themed France-meets-America. From the food to the decorations to the music, all of the details focused on developing the fusion of the two cultures. With just a day's notice, I donned a black BCBG runway silk crepe jumpsuit that I've been saving for just such an occasion, and paired it with my signature fushcia lipstick for an elegant, understated look. It was perfect; I was happy that many of the guests complemented me on my look. Success! As my first formal black tie gala, this was one hell of a way to kick things off. 

Here are some of my favorite photos from the event; if you are looking for a photo and don't see it here, or are curious, you can find my entire set of photos HERE on the Corcoran's Flickr. My favorite trend of the evening was the proliferation of jeweled animal clutches...the leopard was my personal favorite. Enjoy!

My flash mis-fired on this shot, overexposing the subjects...but to great cinematic effect, I think! I love this happy accident, and have a whole series that look just oh so old school Washington DC. 

Bubbly was abound!

A fantastic use of sheers, and an excellent jeweled owl bag

Clutches, abandoned to dance

The ever-lovely Kristin Guiter and Melanie Kimmelman of the Corcoran

In my usual style, I wanted to capture the details and nuances of the attendees looks while showing off their personalities. This stylish attendee was so excited when I asked her to show me her bag!

Our lovely hostess with the French Ambassador

All of the table settings were gorgeous and ornate...and themed to coordinate the art in the rooms. Divine!

A fellow photographer's accessories

Oh Fendi. Yes please. 

Great specs!

The Moulin Rouge room was festooned with feathers and other decorations that lent a slightly elicit feel to the space...perfect.

A little post-work champagne? Don't mind if I do!

Of course, I ran into my old housemate Sara Axelrod and her boyfriend Colin. DC is seriously small. 

Me, in a BCBG runway jumpsuit, with the lovely Oriana in vintage (more on her, I promise!)

The Corcoran PR ladies dancing it out in Club Corcoran!

Oh, I also forgot to mention that of course, I bumped into my lovely editor from Washingtonian Magazine immediately upon arrival...and the team popped me into their photo studio to be photographed while photographing them! Their photo hasn't emerged online, so we'll see where it ends up...print perhaps?

Opening of the Corcoran's Next Show

Last weekend I photographed the opening of the new show at the Corcoran, Next, which highlights the work of graduating students. I love photographing these kind of events; artists are used to communicating visually, and see their style as an extension of that. So much color, pattern, and edgy styling! I got to shoot the artists all over the museum and with their work. There was excellent representations by both genders, but I think the ladies pulled it out on this one. Cheers!

Check out more after the jump.

Artist Inspiration: Jason Edward Tucker

Last night I went to photograph at the Corcoran after hours, and stumbled upon artist and queer art collective Boys Be Good founder Jason Edward Tucker installing his newest piece, "running out of lullabies" for the Lens Culture, Installation and Time Based Media exhibit at Gallery 31. I had photographed and met him before, so I was touched and moved to be able to document him engaging with his art. I have long been fascinated with manipulating video projection and photography to develop unique portraits, so this was really special. The exhibit opens March 8 and runs through the month. While I love many of the photos I take (that's why I take them), these stirring images are among my very favorites. Be inspired. 

GoKateShoot for the Corcoran: Holly Bass' Moneymaker

A couple weeks ago, I had the great honor of photographing performance artist Holly Bass for her dance marathon at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. I shoot for the gallery, but was excited when they asked me to shoot Holly, who I am blessed to call my friend. Suspended in a plexiglass box over the entrance to the museum, Holly danced for 7 hours for her piece called Moneymaker, in which she straps two gold basketballs to her butt as a commentary on how the media portrays black womens' bodies. This moving piece of work was complementary to the gallery's show 30 Americans, which highlighted 31 black artists' work. I was very moved by Holly's ability to infuse a sense of fun and style into the serious nature of the ideas behind her performance in a way that made the piece accessible to everyone there. It was beautiful, so many thanks to Holly to having me. Enjoy!

Street Snaps: Corcoran

Tonight is a stylish event marathon: I'm doing a femme menswear look with 6 different prints (ohhhh yes!) to step out with Eliot Payne as my partner in crime to the extraordinarily sold out Hugh & Crye + CapFABB + The You Finder event (mmm men, haha), which focuses on menswear style. Directly after, we're zipping over to the highly anticipated Thirst DC event. I will be giving a talk in the near future, so I'm going to photograph, flirt, and get an idea of what the heck is going on. Per usual. 

These photos are from a set I did for the Corcoran at a recent talk by inspiring artist Kara Walker. We have some incredible nail art, prints, unique specs, and as always, major color. Taking notes.

Corcoran, Student Exhibition

As many of you may know, I am excited to be photographing a long-term project with the Corcoran College of Art + Design, helping them completely re imagine their website and print materials. The students and artists that compose the community of this hallowed institution are themselves completely inspiring; their art, personal style, and ways of addressing the world are diverse and unique. In addition, I have the chance to create evocative imagery around the gallery spaces there as well, meeting, photographing, and being inspired by many greats. GoKateShoot is so much about how people choose to communicate visually, and where better to go to do so then one of the best art galleries and schools in the city. 

I am grateful for the opportunity to engage in an artistic dialogue once more. While I look shooting street style, it is my larger, more creative projects that get me inspired and excited. I come from a studio art background and miss the lively intellectual rigor of critiques, hours spent intensely crouched over a canvas, and the free-wheeling, intuitive, and emotional thought process behind developing a communal body of work. DC has been incredible for this, and I have found artistic souls with whom I am blessed to create work (much of which is yet to be realized, as we continue to plan, but you'll LOVE IT, I promise). My own work has shifted and evolved, and I am looking forward to seeing how those changes meet the challenge of communicating what is incredible about the Corcoran. 

A local jewelry designer pears through the case holding her work, above. I adore the strong, intricate details. 

This young artist is wearing 4 different prints, has half his head shaved, and has a strong visual sense of self. The last statement is the most important. 

Artist Nick Cave spoke to an attentive packed house about his work, the incredible sound suits. 

I love this woman's beautifully thick belted coat. This is just the right kind of bulk. 

GOLD SHOES. !!!!! Enough said.

Mother daughter duo, with matching tights. Trend. 

This artist covered her nails in stickers because she was inspired by the colors. That's reason enough for me!

A jewelry students work speaks to an industrial marriage of organic forms and a modernist mentality. I love it!

GoKateFilm: 30 Americans

Happy Monday! To start the week off, here is a series of photos I took using a disposable film camera as part of a project I did with Thirst DC cofounder Eric Schulze (pictured with the contents of his pockets below). Whenever I get a little too comfortable with my typical working patterns, I like to change styles and reverting back to my old school art background is a great way to keep things fresh. 

On Martin Luther King's birthday, I took the opportunity to revisit the 30 Americans exhibit at the Corcoran, meeting up with some of my stylish friends along the way. Stylist Elise Peterson, performance artist Holly Bass, creative team Kimee Brown, Stephanie Mills, and Michelle German, and several others. all came out to see the exhibit.

I love the lack of control with film; it is an excellent exercise in patience for me, particularly the time between dropping the film off and getting the proofs back. I have experience developing my own film, but here in the city it is much more time efficient to get it done. I love the painterly look of the photos; it is an incredible look at a truly moving exhibit. 

This Bracelet, These Hands

On Monday, I photographed the 9 at 9 poetry event at Busboys and Poets for the Corcoran, who will be using my photos to raise awareness about their 30 Americans exhibit that examines the role of race in art. I photographed the press preview when it opened, so I was really excited when the Corcoran approached me to capture their event. I've written poetry for many years, and it was an opportunity to spend a soothing evening with fellow writers and listen as they responded to the 30 Americans art. I am so thankful to live in a city filled with such a diverse mix of people who all bring unique perspectives to the table. Emotions are quantified differently, but everyone feels the same; it is wonderful to see that come through the poetry and art. 

I took many lovely photos, but my favorites by far are these two. 

After the readings, I approached poet Ernesto Mercer and asked about his bracelet. It seemed really unique and had caught my eye as soon as I got to Busboys, so I introduced myself (as I typically do) and asked him to tell me more about his bracelet. 

Ernesto explained that it was by a local designer who used to work for Calvin Klein, but that it was made under unique circumstances. One day at CK, the head designer approached the designer and told him he didn't use enough classic Calvin Klein materials. In response, the man went straight downstairs to fetch a fistful of vintage leather belts from the early 1970s. He cut them into strips to make bracelets, and then looked around to look for more "classic" Calvin Klein materials. He lit upon the extension cord at his desk and the bottle caps from the beers he was drinking and fashioned the piece Ernesto was wearing. How witty! 

I love that story; the designer took it off and gave it to Ernesto when he complimented him on it. The gifting of the piece is just as special as how it was created. I love that this classic DC poet was wearing a bracelet that can only be thought of as poetry. It is very fitting. 

I snapped this photo of an elderly gentleman's hands as he was writing during the reading. As a fellow writer, I understand the immediacy that comes with the urge to write; I often forgo socialization, sleep, and a myriad other things to tap away at the keys or feel the brush of thick parchment paper traveling beneath my pen point. 

Big thanks to the Rachel Cothran and the rest of the Corcoran team for having me out. 

Press Preview: 30 Americans

I had the pleasure of attending the press preview for the new exhibit at the Corcoran, 30 Americans. The exhibit, which runs through February 12, features 31 African American artists and their commentaries on racial, sexual, and historical identity. I had the pleasure of meeting and speaking with the curator of the show, Sarah Newman, and developed a deep appreciation for the thoughtful process and months of work that go into curating a show like this. In each space, Sarah centered the installation around one master work and coupled it with emerging artists who were influenced by that older generation. I found the work to be incredibly diverse and engaging, and will absolutely be returning to spend more time in the space. 

I'd like to thank the Corcoran for hosting, particularly the lovely PR staff. 

Work below includes that by Nick Cave, Mickalene Thomas, Kehinde Wiley, Shinique Smith, and others. Video courtesy of the Corcoran.

Nick Cave Soundsuit Performance from Corcoran Gallery of Art on Vimeo.