Back in November, I wrote the above in a message to Meg, and thus began the journey from a crazy little idea to a full-fledged adventure.
One of the things I love most in life is coming up with creative ways to feature brands and businesses. Some people call it brand strategy, some people call it business marketing...I call it doing really cool shit to tell people about other really cool shit. The men's calendar idea started out as a really cool way to feature one of my clients, Brad. What better way to get the word out about this guy to people who would never ordinarily hear about a fly-fishing guide from Hayward, WI?
The more I thought about it, the more I realized how big this thing could be. The Real Women of Namekagon calendar showed me that it was possible...that there was accessible talent here, and that people would get behind supporting something that featured their friends and neighbors. I didn't want to copy that calendar, though - first of all, I hated the thought of stepping on anyone's toes, but second, my vision for a men's calendar was decidedly different.
While the added advantage of doing a men's calendar was finding, meeting, and working with attractive men, I didn't want to make a calendar that just featured hot guys...because beefcake, at the end of the day, gets boring. What I wanted to make was a calendar that showcased the most interesting men of Sawyer County: Men who were proprietors of local and well-known businesses, men who were famous sportsmen and athletes, men who were making a name for themselves both in the local community and beyond. Men with stories to tell.
So I recruited Meg and (her also-incredibly-talented finance) Erik to be the photographers for the project, and convinced dreammaker and highly-in-demand stylist at Salon Soleil, Jennifer Titus, to come on board as our hair and makeup artist. Since December, we've been fleshing out details for the stylistic vision, hand-selecting each of the 12 men featured, and plotting out plans for creative direction and funding. I cannot tell you guys how lucky I feel to be able to work with this team - not only are each of them incredibly talented at what they do, but also they're just freaking fun.
And yesterday? We had our very first photo shoot for the calendar, which we've officially named The Dapper Dozen: Sawyer County Edition.
And it was AMAZING.
Here's some outtakes from the shoot (disclaimer: The quality of the photos below are not in any way related to the quality of the photos you'll see in the calendar. I was using a crap Blackberry and iPhone camera for these shots, so. Hence, outtakes)!
|Jennifer, getting Mr. February ready for his shoot while Meg lines up her shot.|
|Shooting the dashing Mr. February at Hatchery Park|
|At Angler's Haven, getting Mr. March ready to make love to the camera...|
|Mr. March is MAGIC!|
|Mr. March, posing in front of his vintage snowmobile (that thing is SWEET!)|
|Mr. January, getting ready for his close-up.|
|Mr. January, like a boss|
Special thanks to Bruce and Sarah for their hospitality at Angler's Haven; to Tim, for his awesome flexibility and enthusiasm, and to Ryan for his easy-going attitude and fall-and-get-right-back-up (heh) spirit.
And of course, to the amazing crew of Meg, Erik, and Jennifer, who made a potentially stressful day into a totally easy, chill, and super fun adventure.
To keep posted on calendar developments, check out our new Facebook page!