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  • Writer's pictureJoelle Cecilia

Lunar New Year: 2021's February Creative Shoot

Updated: Aug 6, 2021

February here in Singapore brings with it the Lunar New Year celebrations, a minimum 3-day celebrations of the new year in the Chinese or Lunar calendar! It's the biggest celebration in the Chinese culture and it's a time for gathering family and friends to eat, drink, and be merry!

With that being said, I thought it was only appropriate that my second monthly creative shoot revolved around such a huge occasion. However, it was tricky with the pandemic still in full swing and I was definitely worried about taking precautions without sacrificing the shots I wanted to take.

I had Brenda of Bmarvlous along with me this time as well, and she was such a great help and collaborator - actually, half this shoot was made up during the trip from my home (where we did the prep) to the location! That's the power of finding people you can truly vibe with and who match your energy.

This time, we had the lovely Kimberley as our subject. She's a bilingual film and theatre actress, as well as a yoga teacher! She has such a bubbly personality and we all had lots of fun right from the start all the way to the end.

Coming along for this shoot as a behind the scenes photographer was my friend, Ashri. He and I actually started working together during my final year project in university and we've been collaborators ever since. I love his calm demeanour and the way he deals with situations in such a measured way. He's a very calming presence to be around.

Wardrobe for this shoot was kindly provided by The Cheongsam Shoppe, a local cheongsam (traditional Chinese dress) designer who I want to thank so much for collaborating on this shoot with me even though it is quite literally the busiest period of the year for them! It was really great getting to know the people behind a brand that's keeping a part of my culture alive.

With this shoot, I wanted to tell the story of a woman who was spending the day in Chinatown, soaking in the atmosphere and preparing for the Lunar New Year.

The direction for this shoot was two pronged - we had two cheongsams with very different designs and moods, so I challenged Kimberley to flex her acting muscles for us and portray these two characters. The first was a playful printed cheongsam, so Brenda paired it with lighter makeup and space buns, which came straight from my mood board and I'm so glad I got to see my vision come to life.

The second was a elegant lace cheongsam, and Kimberley absolutely nailed the "Crazy Rich Asians" mood we were all feeling when we looked at her! Brenda switched out the space buns for a low bun and made the makeup a little more matte and composed - she did it all in a hawker centre, no less!

I'm really happy with how this shoot turned out, and I've heard nothing but good things from the team as well. Looking forward to next month!


Photography: Joelle Cecilia Quek

Hair and Makeup: Brenda via Bmarvlous

Behind the scenes photographer: Ashri J.

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