Happy Tuesday my loves! It’s taken me a bit of time to get around to sharing this shoot with you, as I’ve been deeply focused on a new embellished denim collection, editing images from my June Wild & Free Jewelry shoots and settling back in at home after a week long road trip from California to Idaho! I’m so excited to finally find the time to publish this post as it’s for one of my go to jewelry labels, Hiouchi Jewels, by Sarah Lewis. Not only is this shoot special to me because I love Sarah’s jewelry so much, but it also represents the day I had a major break through when it comes to taking my own photos.
You may have read this on Instagram, but on the day of this shoot I decided to go way out of my comfort zone and adventure to a popular area in the Santa Barbara mountains, called Lizard’s Mouth. I usually avoid this place when it comes to using my tripod as it’s often overrun with people and I tend to get super uncomfortable around strangers during my usual tripod photoshoot. Over the years I’ve gotten better at ignoring onlookers as I’ve set up at beaches and while traveling with others around. Despite these recent experiences of forging past my fear, I still felt extremely reluctant to go to Lizard’s Mouth (even though it’s one of my all time favorite places to shoot when I’m behind the camera working with a model).
After struggling with this mental obstacle for so long, I decided it was time to break the pattern and I ignored my fear and packed up my bags to shoot in the heat of the day amongst the standstone rocks and clear blue skies. I channeled some major festival princess vibes and draped myself in Hiouchi styled alongside gold skirt from Nasteski Fashion and celestial crown from Flight of Fancy.
During the shoot I encountered a couple of unsuspecting hikers who definitely looked confused upon finding me nestled between some rocks with a moon mirror and my tripod, practically dressed up like a lunatic. Fortunately, the dreadful moment I had so wished to avoid quickly ended and we went our separate ways. It was then that I realized, everything I had created in my head in regards to fear and being exposed with my tripod was so irrational and unnecessary! That further made me realize how fear can intensely hinder creativity and the best way to rid feelings of self doubt is to confront them head on. Since that day, I’ve used my tripod in many other settings I wouldn’t have dreamt of doing otherwise. I took a solo trip to Big Sur and shot along Hwy 1 and I’ve stopped letting the fear of what others might think stop me from dreaming up shoots in new and exciting places.
The best part about all of this, is that these images turned out to be some of my FAVORITES and I had so much fun setting up the shots, styling the shoot and reliving the experience while I edited. It really was a huge uplifting learning experience for me and I hope that it can in some way inspire you to look at things a bit differently and try to move past something that may be holding you back. Progressing past these obstacles takes repetitive reminders to persevere and a lot of self compassion, but it feels so amazing once you land on the other side.♡
Scroll on for the rest of this shoot and a special note in regards to my love for Hiouchi …
Hiouchi Jewels by Sarah Lewis
I first met Sarah at Symbiosis festival in 2016 and ever since I’ve been enamored with her jewelry. My first piece was a gorgeous Indica silver and turquoise necklace which remains one of my most worn pieces. Over the years I’ve accumulated quite the collection of Hiouchi Jewels and this most recent gold collection has already become some of my go to statement accessories. I LOVE that the Shiva necklace doubles effortlessly as a crown and the stacking rings have been on my fingers nearly every day since I received them. These pieces are bold, feminine, and transition easily from embellished festival getups to every day wear. Worn on their own, or stacked together as I did for this shoot, they make for versatile pieces that add a special touch to any outfit.
As with all labels that I love, a lot of my admiration stems from a real connection with the designer. I feel so fortunate to have met such wonderful, empowering women over the years and while Sarah and I live hours apart in different areas of California, I always make a point to stop and see her jewelry booth when she vends at festivals I’m attending. Each time I seem to lose track of the moment because we immediately get wrapped up in conversation over all our shared interests.
I recently learned more about her career as a designer and I found it so inspiring to think about the different ways in which she’s embraced creativity and found a means to live as an entrepreneur in different settings. She’s gone from working as a designer for Free People, owning her own boutique in Philadelphia, and now, to living amongst the redwoods in Northern California with Tribe Jewelry as her focus. She’s certainly very driven and I find that incredibly motivating when it comes to envisioning my life and process with Wild & Free Jewelry.
I hope these photos inspire you take a moment to connect with Sarah and browse her stunning array of jewelry!
thank you for reading.
until next time,