Trillectro 2012

I'm a complete music junkie, so when my friends over at DC promo powerhouse DC to BC offered me an all-access media pass to shoot the first Trillectro, a new DC music festival that marries electronic dance music with hip hop, I was in. Stay-in-the-night-before-to-rest-up kind of in, so you know it's serious! With Flosstradamus, Schoolboy Q, Casey Veggies, and Body Language headlining, I was fully hype. I got interested in live electronic music while living in Barcelona in 2009, and just jump at the chance to see anyone major super dancey self loves it! 

The guys were good enough to let me skip the 10am media call (Ha! That was never going to happen.), so I sailed in around 4 and started started chatting with and shooting the talent all hanging out in VIP. Sound check and interviews were long over but the crowd was still reasonable, so I was able to get some awesome shots of what they were wearing to be stage-ready. 

The street style was RIDICULOUS. Potentially the best I've seen since moving to DC. That good. I was having a moment for approximately 6 continuous hours. It. was. AWESOME. Refinery 29 featured some of my style shots, which you can check out HERE.

There are 111 photos. ONE HUNDRED AND ELEVEN. Check it!

What does one wear to shoot a music festival? This!

An ultra-fem croquet crop top, denim cutoffs that I studded by hand (I think I'm adding more, actually), a silk fringe necklace, leather fringe earrings by Krista of Butler + Claypool, my 1930's Swedish military bag that I can't stop carrying around (it fits my camera perfectly!), signature purple/fuschia lip, and my ultra favorite rugged gal combat boots. A gal's gotta stay safe when she's elbowing her way through the pit!  

People were dancing like mad, EVERYWHERE!

I had access to the main festival, VIP, backstage, and on stage...all of which you'll see in the photos below! Enjoy! 

Printed pants are going to be huge for fall, but lots of people are getting a jump on this trend already!

So many prints! And the little cute!

Intense nail art is widely becoming the norm, but this chica was rocking some seriously next-level nails

Floral hat, some serious accessories, and a not-so-serious attitude

More printed pants...I love them with the scarf on her bag below

Graphic tribal print mixing

Me! Getting a little sassy, of course.

Mundy Spears, actress and 80s style queen extraordinaire on the left, with a friend rocking local lifestyle brand Goodkin's t-shirt 

Guys from local lifestyle brand The Goodkin

The hat is everything.

A major color palette, and some serious guy style

The backpack is back in a big way, folks! Here's one done right.

Perfect statement shades, with a little eyeliner pop

This is my favorite look from the festival...maxi skirt with a slit to here, bondage top, graphic chest piece, sweet cropped locks. Swoon!

So intense! I love it.

Do you need an excuse to wear lingerie in public? No? OK good.

Some tough fem styling with these tights and boots

Another favorite much wonderful layer play

Hats off to anyone ballsy enough to rock a studded fannypack. 

These tattoos are everything...and her hair...and I've photographed her before!

Hello floral love!

I love her commitment to her military look with this hat and blue lashes

Hat cocked just so - very fedora vibe, but with a baseball cap. Cool street take on classic styling.

These gals sing backup for Mary J. Blige, and have the awesome looks to match! Hats! Prints! Leopard!


The unforgettable ladies of Neon V Magazine

Perfect rings, in "The Pit"

Watermelon socks backstage? Oh yes.

This is all the everything...leopard, metallic pockets, mocassins, accessories...yes.

Great rock and roll vibe

Eyeliner, leather earrings, and great swag

People loosing their shit during local DJ icon Tittsworth's set

Oh hello again! So happppppy!

Mix gingham checks

During the last couple of sets, it started to rain. Not just a little, but a full-blown, oh shiiiiit, well, OK, fine, I'm DRENCHED kind of rain. And while things could have gone horribly wrong, it just made everyone in the audience get even more elated and made the show incredible. I was squeezed and pulled and pushed all over the Pit (the closed off area for the media right in front of the stage) but got some sick shots before heading for a quieter scene back stage. The green on the edges of some of the frames? I had to wrap my camera in a tank top to keep her dry. ;) Check it!

In the pit

Alexander Gorman


...and then everyone rushed the stage. And it was awesome.

Just doing the Dougie with Doug E. Fresh. Just another Saturday night...

At this point I'd had enough in the Pit, so I hopped up on stage for the rest of the show. It's damn near impossible to get a bad picture from onstage, let me tell you! I was up for Flosstradamus' set, and despite having it shut down early, it was fantastic! 

Oh, by the way, none of this was shot with a zoom lens...35mm prime the whole time. If you want the action, you have to get up in the action. So that's just what I did. 

The moment before he touched down on this crowd surf

Endless thanks to DC to BC for having me, I had an incredible and loved making history with you guys (if the Post says it, you know it's real!)

Ginger Moxie

I've always had an appreciation for red hair. When I was young, I dreamed of having long, luxurious gingery locks reflective of my love for fellow independent ladies Pippi Longstocking and Anne of Green Gables. As I grew older, I came to appreciate the ideas of wildness and independence...and developed friendships with redheads both natural and adopted who embodied that devil-may-care attitude, eyebrows cocked and flaming manes flying. Yesterday after our shoot for Washingtonian Magazine, my friend Shannon Cusello indulged my request to take some photos fully celebrating her hair. The following series is just that; a joyous expression of drama and moxie. 

Hair by Immortal Beloved

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!

Eva Block: Studio Sessions

I take this opportunity to interrupt the regular flow of life here on GoKateShoot. Last Friday, three students died in a tragic fire near Marist College, my alma mater. Two of those victims were my close friends and muses, Eva Block and Kerry Fitzsimons. I photographed them both extensively in the spring of 2011, and will be paying homage to their beauty, talents, and grace here for the next several days. Both were fashionable, stunning, and driven; that is why I was drawn to shoot them, but also why it is apt to say my final goodbyes to them here. They were dancers, musicians, future cancer researchers, and fashion designers. This is a perfect example how these are not just silly photographs; when I told Eva's mother about the photos at the service yesterday, she begged me to help her remember her daughter. And I will. After days of refusing to release photos to the press, I think I am ready to release them here, and later, in a book. It is selfish for me to hold onto these photos, when they can help the many, many others who are hurting from this loss. Link these photos to whoever you like; all I ask is that you do not remove the photos from the site without permission. I am happy to send copies of the photos near and far, all I ask is that you ask. Send inquiries or further questions to 

Thank you. 


Eva Block

Eva Block was beautiful. Physically beautiful, yes of course, but it was her effervescent spirit and raw creative talent that made her one of my photographic muses while I was finishing my senior photography work in New York. We had been friends for years; I met her only a few days into her freshman year. We connected early through a mutual love for the arts, dance, and style. At her funeral, Eva's mother spoke of  how Eva expressed a desire to look different from everyone else, even at the tender age of 13. And she did; her beautiful curly hair, piled bracelets filled with meaning, and penchant for quirky bohemian styling singled her out as unique. 

In the spring of 2011, I was deep in photographing a series of studio sessions for what I consider one of my life-long photography projects: Versions of Self. For the project, I worked with my subjects to visually investigate the different parts of their personas. It fascinates me that we are different people when we are alone, with our families, in the office, or working on our passion projects. I was curious about what those Versions looked like for others, and set out to investigate it. 

Eva got it. She and Kerry, and the other girls of their house, came to my studio one spring afternoon armed with all manner of outfits and stories to share as we documented their Versions. Here, you will see what Eva chose to investigate. 

She was a dancer. We began our session with these early, more traditional shots. They are a beautiful testament to her technical ability, all perfect form, lean muscle and poise. 

Our conversation turned to the more emotional, visceral side of dance; we both felt deeply connected to using our bodies to communicate. We documented our mutual love for the quieter, more sensual forms found in dance. Do not misunderstand the purpose of these photos; while there is partial implied nudity, we both felt it was necessary to pay homage to the body as the medium used to express her art of movement. These photos are among my most favorite that I have ever taken. 

She was a fashion designer, and it was in History of Couture that we became close. She was brilliant; her attention to detail and meticulous notes meant that she blew the other budding fashionistas out of the water. She was the first to raise her hand, and always had an intelligent, devil's advocate response that sparked class debate. I admired her work ethic and desire to instigate lively intellectual discussion about fashion. She taught me to ask all the right questions about couture. 

She styled herself for these photos, channeling a perfectly "essential Eva" bohemian vibe as she posed with her mannequin. From the rings on nearly every finger, to the hand-drawn henna snaking across the plane of one hand, her style married personal details with modest forms. 

The final Version that Eva chose to portray was the most simple. For those of you who did not know her, Eva was a homebody. She loved the creature comforts of home; a fresh pot of coffee, a book on the sun porch, and cozy dress reserved for laying low at home with her closest family and friends. We took very simple, very Eva, photos for this Version. In a comfortable, familiar flannel, she is just Eva. And she is beautiful. 

Rest in peace, my beautiful friend. You are, and will be, missed. 

My DC Birthday Shenanigans

As many of you know, my birthday was a couple weeks ago, and I did a two city, double birthday trouble tour. I had a wild and fantastic weekend in NYC, where I hung out with my friends who are incredible photographers and their assistants who shoot for Vogue, Vanity Fair, and other drool-worthy publications. We went for drinks and then went to an insane warehouse party in BK, and the only cameras present were film. So purist! I love talking to them about the artistic nuances of photography...would you believe me if I told you that one well-known gentleman and I discussed how photography is painting light FOR AN HOUR? It was great! I was in heaven! I always learn so much from these interactions, and am truly blessed to have friends in my life who challenge me artistically. 

For my DC birthday, I wanted to keep it classic GoKateShoot, so I partnered with It's Vintage Darling for a curated cocktail party in the shop with some of my favorite DC fashionistas before we all headed down to Blackbyrd Warehouse to meet up with a larger crowd. The night was filled with rainbow presents, laughs galore, some REAL TALK (ooo and I'm so glad to have friends who can dish it and take it!), and of course, photos of some fabulously dressed DC fashion icons. 

The lovely Shannon Cusello of Immortal Beloved

Art history ace Cat Diesel

This is the night I debuted my fox, pairing it with a bronze wrap top, slim and trim black cigarette pants, and an array of layered arm candy. Of course, the octopus had to be worn; as one of my favorite pieces, it truly makes me feel dressed! Since I do feel like it's an essential part of my look, I'll mention that my haircut is thanks to incredible rockstar stylish Tyler Lee Larish. My incredible necklace is handmade by actress Mundy Spears. There was some serious partner in crime action after we rolled in to Blackbyrd and met up with more friends. It was great timing too; it was our party and a big banger for a member of local DC rock favorites US Royalty, who are also an impossibly stylish crew. Jackpot! We snacked on oysters, sipped cocktails, and danced our dapper booties off. 

Now, let's talk about the gentlemen. Per my request (and frankly, they would all do it anyway), everyone who came out was dressed to the nines. I have to give it to the guys though; their dapper spins and attention to detail were impeccable! Artist Trey Smith paired a double-sided cameo and traditional Brooks Brothers bow tie with perfectly layered scarf and vintage puffer vest. Josh Wu just returned from a trip to Africa, so he is mixing up his [perfectly tailored] traditional pinstripe suit with African accents. Of course, no party of mine would be complete without the dandy dream team of Eric Channing Brewer and Eliot Payne. Eric is dressed above and beyond fantastic, per usual. Eliot is wearing one of his own bow ties for Accoutre, a little number called The Casual Friday (find it here) that is double sided hot pink corduroy and dark denim (isn't that just the wittiest thing you've ever heard?! It kills me. I love it).

These gentlemen had never met, but were oh-so-dapper in their bow ties as they became fast friends. There are very few things I love more than introducing my friends so they become friends!

And who was the most dapper lady of them all? Cat Diesel, of course.

Look at all this stylish glee! I couldn't ask for more. 

Classic E.C.B.

The dandy lineup was KILLER. 

And then, my friends, we danced. Because true style means doing what you love, and damn, we all sure love to boogie! 

I'd like to pause. These next photos of 9 To Fly blogger Sade (pictured here as well) and Eric Channing Brewer dancing are classic. This is what style is about; you look at these two perfectly modern, individualistic people and their outfits would fit in 1940. Or 1960. Or 1970. But it is 2012, and damn, isn't it just inspiring that these two can at once reference the great looks of the last 70 years and still manage to look perfectly now? Plus they put the rest of us to shame dancing, I'll have you know. These photos are my favorite of all of my birthday shots and could not be more spontaneous and lovely. 

I’d also like to give a special thanks and shout out to the fine gentlemen from Dr. K’s Vintage who came out to help me celebrate. It was such a special treat and was fantastic to kick it with you, as always. 

So thank you, my dear friends and followers, for an incredible birthday and year. I'm not one for nostalgia, but I do love to give credit where credit is due. You all rock, and I love that you continue to inspire me day in and day out. 

Photos taken by me, and several others at the party. I love a communal shoot!

{Simon} : Olympos, Turkey

Simon (from BUUHRRMING-UM, UK) is one of my favorite people to take pictures of ever. Seriously. Just the nicest guy, which translates in photos, who is impossibly visually interesting. I'm not interested in shooting people who are "pretty" or "handsome" (though Simon is), but have no personality; for me, it's all about capturing that flavor of someone. Some people you have to work with to get it out, but others, like Simon, gleefully give it to you from the beginning. 

A Little Bit Showy

I love mixing scale, whether it be in fashion, interior design, or the creation of a photo. Though her hair and makeup are minimalist, art historian and scholar Joanna Bojda's brass-knuckle-esque ring suddenly gives her a surprising edge. Offset by the colorful night lights of Istanbul, the skewed proportions of dancer Kelsea Burch's body to her shadow make the middle shot dynamic. In the last shot, I love the striking colors and extreme perspective shot from the base of the wall; suddenly a little 3-story house is making quite a statement indeed. 

Photographed at DC Here Now and Submerge DC art events last night. Had a great time, met dynamic people, and of course got some amazing photos. I'm going to keep them under wraps for now, but keep checking back! Can't wait to share with you. 

Thought of You

Here is a really beautiful animated film that I found featured on a blog a follow, the charming rockstar diaries. As a dancer, this feels at once familiar and fresh. With a light first snow having appeared overnight, and having met some wonderful new people last weekend who I know will appreciate this, I am happy to share it with you now.

I particularly like the feathers toward the end.

Thought of You from Ryan J Woodward on Vimeo.