Meet one of the winners of EngagEd 2018—our an\nnual free wedding photography contest—for their free vintage military engagement shoot!
Sam and Connor were the runner-ups of Zorz Studios annual free wedding photography contest by winning the 2nd place. They scored a free photoshoot which, due to Connor’s Air Force service, led us to a vintage military engagement shoot. Here’s a brief about them along with the entered concept:
We Skyped shortly after the end of the contest and set the things into motion as there was some prep in order. For the authentic vintage military engagement shoot, Sam’s preparations required homework to research traditional pin-up looks and styles. She knew she wanted to do a pop of red and polka dots. Finding the right dress was difficult but she ended up wearing Lulus, and her shoes where from DSW. Her hair was the most important factor to give the iconic pin-up look, and Lorraine of CSI Salon in Farmingville, her long-time family friend, helped with the right style. They ended up doing victory rolls used to rock back in the early 50s. She did her own makeup sticking to the theme by having winged eyeliner and red lips. The overall preparation was very DIY and could easily be recreated with a little research.
All (well, almost) Connor had to do was wear his uniform! He did have his hair cut done by Jarett from Iron and Tread Barber Shop in Sayville. This shop specializes in American traditional cuts, which is what gave our pilot an old-school look while wearing a modern day uniform.
Very importantly, such vintage military engagement shoot concept required a prominent location. I’ve never photographed planes, let alone vintage one, so a museum came to mind immediately. I’ve seen my peers work at the Floyd Bennett Field which offers a few basic options if you are lucky. I hoped we would be but fortunately, we got an even better place at our disposal, the Cradle of Aviation Museum — an aerospace museum to commemorate Long Island’s part in the history of aviation. It is located on land once part of Mitchel Air Force Base which was the site of many historic flights.
First, we got after-hours access to the museum, when the doors got closed at 5 PM top the public. It’s a huge space so to stay focused, we only used one spot where one of the surviving Republic P-47 Thunderbolts, Cheek Baby, stands. The couple was even allowed to climb on the wing!
After about half an hour, we were escorted into the hangar closed to public. It is basically a gigantic workshop that hosts pre-production or in-repairs displays. The area isn’t as tidy but presents several opportunities of a close encounter with exhibits, sort of a backstage experience. I quickly walked around the hangar and settled on a few props like the E-2 Hawkeye carrier-capable tactical airborne early warning aircraft and an army truck (military jeep Willys MB, maybe?) hidden under a tarp cover.
We finished this vintage military engagement shoot outdoors where it rained a bit.
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Check out some behind-the-scenes done by my wife and the 2nd photographer on the shoot. And, ahem, allow me to shamelessly quote Sam on her experience…