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Please Save the 80s.

I can save up photo inspiration all day long on Pinterest, but most of my personal favorite photos of my work comes from when it was just in the moment. Asking a client to do something that "feels or seems kinda odd," but will "certainly be cool later."

I think I've watched so many movies, films and have such a broad taste in music; that my brain just stretches to the far ends of itself in these creative photoshoots. Most of the time I don't even correlate where the inspiration came from until I'm culling an album and find the image later.

1989 John Cusak Film, Say Anything, Photography Pose Inspiration

I had a little mood inspiration for an American Retro photoshoot and while I know there was a few things that would have topped this session off the the charts, I personally love this one photo the most and it's simplicity.

Summer in the City meets John Cusak in the 1989 cult classic "Say Something."

One of the most iconic images of film romance. A total Romeo and Juliet meets 80s. A still shot image, that nearly didn't even happen.

For my younger readers, you may be completely lost on who John Cusak was or frankly anything that was a pop culture phenomena of the '80s, so let me elaborate a little.

Cameron Crowe, the movie's director, advised 22 year old Cusak (his character was named Lloyd in movie) to hold a boombox over his head in the wee hours blasting Peter Gabriels "In Your Eyes" to his young love, Diane.

John Cusak in 1989 Say Anything

The scene almost didn't take place, as Cusak was a little defiant and didn't exactly understand the magnitude of the scene yet. Especially holding a static radio over his head. Lloyd (Cusak) had just been broken up with by Diane, and his face of silent dignity just makes the scene even more emotional. A tale of a character in every form.

Here's a clip from the movie from said scene:

I had an idea to do a photoshoot in particular with some records and a "new" Crosley record player I scored for $15 on marketplace. So I asked my model Maddi to go with it, which she totally did.

We found a little corner next to the Arcade Bar in Lincoln, Nebraska and set up her pow wow of Bob Dylan, Elton John and a picnic table blanket. We moved pretty fast throughout our shoot, hitting up multiple locations, so as I wrapped up the record shots, I asked her to just grab a record and hold it right in front of her face. It was cool, but there was something more we needed.

As a lover of neon signs and finding anything retro, the sign stood out. So we had her stand up.

"Hold the record over your head and look off over there. Sorry, I know it sounds weird."

I knelt down to my knee on the hot cement and changed my angle to show some height. I wanted to get the full size in photo so my 35mm 1.4 was perfect for the wide angle.

Click click click.


That's the shot.

Record Player Photography Pose

American Flag Photography Inspiration

Retro photoshoot aesthetic

Black and white photography inspiration


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