Monday, August 25, 2014


Harness: Hopeless Lingerie
Cage bralette: Hopeless Lingerie (similar)
Black stacking rings: Hunter Gatherer Jewelry
Silver branch ring: Hunter Gatherer Jewelry
Skirt: eBay
Velvet hooded cloak: Vintage

I can't write much today as I seem to be coming down with something, but I'll take the time to make this little public service announcement...
Buy independent!

The ladies who made the pieces in the photos above are artisans no manufacturer can replicate. Not only are they incredible for sacrificing so much time and energy to perfecting their craft, but they offer up such a quality and level of detail that can best be compared to that of a honeycomb; carefully constructed and articulated by a complex hive-mind in such elegance and strength. You won't get that special kind of feeling from lingerie or jewelry from Forever 21 - I'll tell you that. So treat yourself to pieces from independent artists every so often. It helps the economy and makes you feel like royalty. Really.

Also, this is the first shoot featuring my nearly completed living room. I'm slowly working on turning my house into a studio/Moulin Rouge/Munster Family home homage room by room. It has eventually come to be titled the SS Casstronaut. I thought the USS Enterprise would be fitting as well, but it seems to already be taken.

Signed prints from this set are available here.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Dark Matter

Dress: it's complicated (read below)
Boots: eBay (similar)

This is a dress that I sort of made for one of my bridesmaids. I stole it before my wedding for this shoot with my pal Christine to break in her new studio in Portland.
To make this dress took a pretty simple dress, cut it all up into lots of strips and panels, then added a ton of sheer fabric to the lining to make it longer and add more of liquid flowy kind of texture. Finally I attached this super silky, almost metallic, maxi skirt to the inside to make it a bit more full. Then end result was really cool. It looks pretty rough because I was just making things up as I went along, but I like that unfinished sort of look. It also has like three different kinds of sheer fabric strewn about it, the contrasting textures made it really interesting too. My girls looked like black ink drops in water when they walked down the aisle. 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Of The Earth

Jewelry and accessories: Hunter Gatherer
Model: Angela AT (also wearing her brand Morph Knitwear)
Styling, cinematography, edit, sound design, vocals: Casstronaut
Shot at the Hoyt Arboretum Portland, OR in May, 2013

Ok, so you guys must remember that film I made last year titled VALLE MORTIS, right? You have to because I didn't shut up about it for like 18 months. In reality the project was a huge challenge for me. I talked about it a bit here. But what I didn't mention was that making that film resulted in many nights crying myself to sleep. I'm a big baby, but it does tend to happen to most people to some degree when you're making something you really care about. You drive yourself completely nuts to put it simply.

OF THE EARTH was a result of that short stint of insanity. I felt that I wanted to break free from the VALLE MORTIS project for a moment and go completely crazy. If I didn't lack the can-act-while-filming-thyself super power you probably would have seen me up there on screen rolling around in the dirt. But I'm super happy with Angela's performance. She did such a great job of channeling how weird and wild I was feeling at the time. It's also very dark, which I suppose you could read into in a negative way, but it really wasn't a dark time for me. Just a weird combination of frustrating and exciting. Resulting in sort of an itch if you will.

I don't really like it when my work means nothing as I believe ambiguity can be kind of dangerous, but I will tell you that what it says to me doesn't have anything to do with witchcraft, alchemy, spells, environmentalism, etc etc or what have you. If anything I see this character as kind of a hybrid between a human and something earthly, perhaps a creature like El Fauno, who is a slave to something as decaying and limited by time and space like our planet. But whatever. It's just fun too. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

From Up High

Shirt: eBay
Blazer: Volcom (similar here)

I haven't been able to get enough of ladies in suits lately. Emma Watson and Cate Blanchett tend to know what they're doing. We don't even need to mention Tilda Swinton. Although it's been difficult for me to find a great one piece or two piece, so I've slowly been collecting several interchangeable pieces. It's much simpler and more fun that way anyway!

Photos by Christine Shields
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