If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you’ve seen this face a lot lately. Her name is Adrieanna Gaston, and she’s my latest muse.
Finding Adrieanna is also a little win for me in the up-and-down road of starting a business. I met her through a contest I ran in the Phoenix area to give away some free head shot sessions for joining my email list. I got tons of entries and was feeling really confident about the direction the business was headed. I chose nine email addresses at random (one for every 50 entries) and notified them that they’d won.
And then I waited. Only one out of the nine responded. I’d had over 400 entries and only one out of nine winners responded? That can’t be right. So I emailed again. One more made an appointment.
Long story short: I had trouble getting people to show up for this free thing I was giving away. I learned that people are either suspicious of or don’t value something free. I was frustrated and more than a little defeated. I’d pretty much written off the whole contest thing—until Adrieanna walked in.
She’d been very responsive, made an appointment right away, and was eager to get going. I knew nothing other than that she was a college student and dancer. Imagine my surprise when this tall, beautiful young woman with gorgeous almond-shaped eyes walked into my studio!
Adrieanna was easy and comfortable in front of the camera, and she hit every pose and expression I asked for. She was alternately sexy and adorable and genuinely seemed to have no idea how much the camera loved her. When I finished editing the photos a few weeks later, I emailed her and pretty much demanded she get a modeling agent. I’ve never done that with a subject. And she was a free contest shoot! On top of it all, she was a smart, sweet girl who was more than appreciative of what I do. That goes a long way with me!
The moral of the story is that even though the contest wasn’t 100% smooth, I met—and have yet to meet—some really great people through it. I was reminded to keep plugging away through perceived setbacks because something good is right around the corner. I have a few more winners to shoot, and I can’t wait to show you the results. For now, enjoy these photos of Adrieanna Gaston. I believe she’s got a great career in modeling ahead if she decides to pursue it!