I’m so lucky that my job takes me to exciting places all over the world as I have a real love for travel and new cultures. We regularly travel to amazing locations for photo shoots and one of my favourite places to photography our jewellery is in Nevada as the light in this part of the world is so perfect and they get hardly any rain (which could always be a problem shooting in England).
As well as myself our trusted team as always for the shoot was the immensely talented photography duo Natalie Bayliss and Max Tetlow of New Pixels Photography and stunning model Grace Tuffnell (truly the most patient model we’ve ever worked with!)
OUT ON LOCATION
There are few locations on earth as visually stunning as the Nevada Desert and it was the perfect place for shooting the lifestyle images for our Botanica and Elemental collections. We wanted the backdrops to reflect the leaf and floral theme of the jewellery from the Botanica range (which is all inspired by nature) so we started on the desert plains where the mountain backgrounds looks amazing against the scattered cactus and Aloe plants.
As you move further up the mountains the landscape changes and becomes more alpine like as you reach Mount Charleston offering a completely different look to compliment our Elemental jewellery pieces as the woodland and textures of the mountains worked so well as this collection is designed to reflect the mineral qualities of the precious metals and earthy gemstones (with the feel of being forged from the earth).
I can’t recommend this part of the world enough for anyone who wants a trip off the beaten track and to soak in scenery that simply leaves you jaw dropped. The colours of the landscape changes dramatically as you explore more of the region with each new discovery topping the last. You’ll love the drive through the Spring Mountain range where the yellow wildflowers burst out of the landscape (we had to stop at the side of the road to shoot amongst the amazing colour).
Get your camera ready for the Valley of Fire situated nearby. We’ve shot there before and couldn’t believe the bright reds, rust and gold tones in the rock formations or the crazy strips of colour at Rainbow Vista.
It’s always important to us to shoot at interesting locations but also for them to be away from the crowds to allow us to shoot without distraction. So we always research for months before our journey and hit upon a few treasured gems we need to pass on. One was Floyd Lamb Park; a literal oasis in the desert that’s so tucked away its always quiet. It features a beautiful lake with mountains in the background and parkland complete with tame peacocks and rabbits wandering around (the peacocks get very curious when our picnic comes out at lunchtime when we take a break from shooting!)
Another hidden gem is Nelsons Landing, a ghost town in the middle of the desert now used by film crews and fashion magazines for photo shoots. With vintage automobiles and even a crashed plane surrounding the collection of rustic buildings it was a dream to work there. For a small fee they’ll let anyone explore and will rent areas for alternative parties and weddings. Take time to check it out, its not something you would see everyday and the family who run it and live there are so friendly with plenty of stories to tell.
STAY + EAT
With Mount Charleston being a hikers paradise in Summer and a ski resort in Winter it’s an obvious place to stay and if you want to do it in style try The Resort on Mount Charleston or the Retreat on Charleston Peak. If your looking for a city vibe then the sights and sounds of Las Vegas is only 30 mins drive from the desert so long as you hire a car to explore (I would recommend The Venetian or Caesars Palace for sheer fun). There are also plenty of lodges and private houses for rental with Airbnb in the area to allow some privacy and to enjoy the scenery.
Luckily for us it’s not all work and we get to try the local cuisine, as we love looking for places of the beaten track or more unusual places to eat. This time a highlight had to be The Peppermill in Las Vegas. Originally frequented by Elvis this place oozes with vintage cool including fire pits in the lounge area and the craziest portions we’ve ever seen for breakfast, but everything was delicious. Also worth a try is the Boulder Dam Brewing Company where we recharged in their garden over lunch between shooting in the Desert nearby. A few miles from the Hoover Dam the restaurant is more like a museum to the dam with artefacts everywhere and a menu that includes local specialities such as Orange Cilantro Chicken and Beer Battered Pickles.
The best shopping in the area lies in Las Vegas or at the Premium Outlets on the outskirts where you can find deals on designer labels and home wares. For luxury boutiques try the Grand Canal at the Venetian or the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace.
Be sure to see the amazing sunsets in the desert, they’re like nothing we’ve ever seen! Its hard not to feel totally at peace watching the mountains change in the stunning colours and light, and be sure to take a bottle of wine to share while enjoying the view.