When asked to write for this website I had an idea of what I was getting into but once I reached the location of the photo shoot for Twelve High Chicks the experience became much more real. I’ve always been curious of what a photo shoot would be like, photography being an interest of mine, and here was my chance to see firsthand.
I was greeted by the always cheerful Pennie Belle taking a break from the action inside. She looked stunning in her long silk robe, gently blowing in the cool breeze. She warned me that there was a lot of chaos going on inside, glitter and corsets and most importantly weed everywhere. After a moment Ajia Mae Moon, the brains and visionary of this website, joined us on the front steps of this charming Burnaby home. We only had a minute to chat about her concept before she had to get back in front of the camera so I followed her into the house to get settled and start making notes.
The first thing that hit me as I crossed the threshold was the billowing smoke mixed with the sunlight streaming through the curtains making for a surreal backdrop. I instantly fell in love with the charm and character of this house and could see why they chose this location. Scantily clad models gathered around in all the rooms primping and chatting, changing outfits and touching up makeup before the talented photographer, MaryBeth, directed them for their next shot. The overall atmosphere in the house was vivacious and upbeat, after all, everyone was happily stoned. Bags and jars and bowls of pot were scattered about here and there. Joints and pipes and a hookah made for excellent props.
After a few moments I got to touch base again with Ajia to discuss some details and ideas. I have to admit I was feeling apprehensive yet excited to be a part of something that she feels so passionately about. Her enthusiasm certainly has a way of rubbing off on others. While we talked we watched on as a few girls were being photographed in the front room window. I still can’t get over how perfectly the sunlight was cooperating on that chilly November day.
I had to step out to run a quick errand while the girls finished up and upon my return was shocked when asked if I would join in for some group shots. I knew this would be an experience I would never forget so I didn’t allow myself a chance to think it over or I would end up second guessing my decision. So, after a quick wardrobe change into something sexier, I pulled my hair from its customary ponytail and gave it a quick tousle, slipped on some heels and without even looking in a mirror was ready to go. The girls took their places and props were passed around as our photographer tested the lighting. I was grateful to be handed a joint to quickly put my anxiety to rest. As the photographer started snapping away and my high started kicking in, I began to feel more at ease.
We finished up with the final shots for the day just as the sunlight started to fade away. Everyone bustled around to tidy and pack their things. The girls were sent home happy and probably hungry after a long day. All in all it was it was a whirlwind afternoon but it was also quite inspiring to see these women laughing and enjoying each other’s company, all for the common goal of raising awareness of women who use cannabis.
Special thank you to the owner for the use of his/her/their home, the brilliant photographer MaryBeth, the gorgeous models, and the ever-talented Ajia Mae Moon.