I am so excited to share my partnership with Kindred Presets for true-to-color, vibrant editing tools for use with Lightroom! Jennefer, the founder of Kindred, reached out to me over two years ago with the idea of teaming up, and I’m forever grateful that she did. We started working on what would become the Kindred Presets x Mary Costa Collection, a package of custom Lightoom profiles and presets that have been created to celebrate our mutual love of color and gorgeous skin tones. I’ll be honest – in the past whenever I’d get asked about releasing presets I’d quickly dismiss the idea. Having Kindred as a partner to help me to craft everything from scratch and release it to the world changed everything! Seeing the phenomenal response to this collection from the photo community has only made this launch that much more rewarding. On top of creating a product we’re both super proud of, the Kindred team and I share the same core values for living with intentional joy, celebrating community, and embracing kindness. Jenn went from a stranger on the Internet to a good friend with so many shared interests, and that was such a special and unexpected result of this collaboration!
After working for so long to perfect these true-to-color Lightroom presets, we knew we wanted to have an epic editorial/video shoot to launch the collection. Jenn is based in Dallas and isn’t super familiar with the So Cal area, so when she asked about my ideal location I immediately thought of the Sands Hotel and Spa in Indian Wells. As a Palm Springs wedding photographer I’m often in the area, and I can’t get enough of the Sands’ pink walls and mesh of Parisian-Moroccan-vintage Mid Century Modern vibes. We pulled together a true dream team of vendors for the shoot and Green Wedding Shoes was kind enough to feature it here. Here are some (okay, many) images from one of my favorite photography days ever, starting with a roundup of the five total looks:
Let’s start from at the beginning of the day at sunrise. Jaime of Wild Heart Events dreamed up this pink checkerboard runway and had it installed late the night beforehand. Native Poppy, the floral masterminds, started setting up hours before the sun came up while it was still dark out. The two of them were big proponents of having the chartreuse yellow floral embroidered Marchesa gown in this setting, and they definitely made the right call! Maximalism at its finest! All of the gorgeous styling was done by Gabrielle Hurwitz who found some true colorful gems.
My dear friend Erin Elyse Long painted this emerald green backdrop and came along to help me on the day. She was truly instrumental in making this shoot a success!
This ceremony location in front of the spa doors at the Sands Hotel faces west, so typically the afternoon light is really hard to work with on an average sunny Southern California Day without any clouds. I was thrilled we had the opportunity to photograph this so early to get my ideal light!
That backlight from the sun is what dreams are made of.
Our model, Gracie from Photogenics Media, was the absolute best. Aside from being breathtaking, she was so fun, charming, and easygoing!
Page Beauty did all of Gracie’s hair and makeup. I loved this pink eyeshadow that perfectly matched the floral embroidery on the dress!
Wouldn’t this checker runway be so epic for a wedding ceremony?
We had to pop in front of the Sands’ lobby doors for a quick photo before the bougainvillea got drenched with sunlight!
And we did all of that before 9:00am! After breaking for breakfast we took to the Pink Cabana restaurant for this second look, a pink beaded fringe Naeem Khan gown – perfect for a solo cocktail disco dance party!
Erin moved her backdrop to Jenn’s balcony and the lighting was unreal.
The Kindred Presets x Mary Costa Collection also comes with a black and white preset! All of the buttons are named after some of my favorite movies – this black and white filter is aptly named “Pyscho”
Page Beauty pumped up that gorgeous magenta pink eyeshadow and added some liner and pink mascara. I love it!
This dress was made for dancing!
I couldn’t resist doing a quick flatlay with our accessories.
Erin made this painted pink backdrop too because she’s the absolute best.
By the end of the second look and a lunch break it was a So Cal photographer’s worst nightmare – harsh mid day sunlight! Thankfully the Sands Hotel has cute pink shaded hallways and a beautiful black and white tiled lobby. This beaded pink floor length Naeem Khan gown popped so beautifully!
Page Beauty did a modern take on an Audrey Hepburn Breakfast at Tiffany’s look with a cool French twist and white winged eyeliner.
Here for that white eyeliner!
As we were in the middle of shooting this look, Jaime came up with the idea of using a banana phone prop to add a dash of whimsy to the high fashion glamour. Natalie of Native Poppy made the fastest grocery story trip ever! What a success!
Our fourth look was this cute flower cutout bathing suit from Cult Gaia at the Sands Hotel’s pool! Jenn had those flower sunglasses leftover from her recent attendance at an Elton John concert and they were perfect for this shot!
After the pool it was time to head out to the desert for the last look of the day at sunset! Classic cars with flowers are basically two of my favorite things to photograph, so it only seemed right that the ad campaign include a blue Cadillac filled with Native Poppy’s floral arrangements that Natalie repurposed from the morning. A short white feather Naeem Khan dress gave adorable elopement bride vibes!
Jenn, Gracie, and this car are all from Texas!
The flower texture on the feather white Naeem Khan dress is so good.
Gracie actually got to drive the car! So fun!
I honestly have over 100 more photos from this campaign but will cut myself off there! This whole day was a “pinch me” moment, from a dream team of powerful and supportive ladies to the most beautiful styling. We honestly had the best time, and I am so grateful for how everyone came together to create something for this labor of love. You can see a behind the scenes of the day here on my Instagram reel! Also, if you’ve made it this far, I am blown away by the ad campaign video Lucy Camryn Films created:
Photography: Mary Costa Photography for Kindred Presets
Venue Name: Sands Hotel & Spa, Indian Wells, CA
Event design: Wild Heart Events
Florals: Native Poppy
Hair and Makeup: Page Beauty
Videography: Lucy Camryn Films
Backdrops, day-of assistance, and moral support: Erin Elyse Long
Checker runway and install: Barker Decor
Model: Gracie Knight
Fashion styling: Gabrielle Hurwitz
Chartreuse Floral Embroidered Gown: Marchesa
Pink and White Dresses: Naeem Khan
Green Flower Cutout Bathing Suit: Cult Gaia
Car: Epic Car Rentals
Featured on Green Wedding Shoes