Tips for Capturing the Perfect Summer Moments

September is right around the corner, but it’s not too late to let the summer sun shine on your next photography project. Don’t let the good times slip away without getting some seriously repost-worthy pictures in. Here are some easy tips to try out next time you pick up the camera on your next adventure.

The Golden Hour

It’s no secret that famed photographers have sworn by the magic lighting that comes from a “golden hour.” While not everyone can have the mastery of Herb Ritts, everyone can definitely benefit from the gorgeous lighting from a nearly-setting sun. Find a location outside with plenty of space for natural light to come through. Next, experiment with the sunlight’s varying tones throughout the day. Everyone’s style is different, but with so many hours of daylight, you’re bound to find your very own perfect hour of lighting.

The Right Place at the Right Time

A good photographer will make anything and everything look incredible behind the lens. Sometimes an unforgettable picture is made up by capturing that perfect subject at just the right moment. While this may be a bit more of a challenge, don’t be discouraged from keeping an open mind and a ready camera lens. Maybe it’s a butterfly flawlessly landing for a split second, or the timely gust of the wind that just turned your bestie into a runway model. Whatever that fleeting moment is, you’ll be ready to catch it with just a hint of patience luck and patience.

The Color Catch

It goes without saying that capturing the spectacular spectrum of colors we see is one of the quickest ways to get a great picture. However, using color as a centerpiece in your photographs calls for a special balance between intensity and content. Start with finding a color that catches your eye, or maybe a group of different colored items that feels satisfying to your artistic palette. Play around with different angles and lighting, and soon you’ll find that perfect splash of color in your portfolio.

The Honest Take

While many of us are more than willing to make our significant others take countless pictures of our outfit, some of our best pictures are when we aren’t even paying attention. Candid pictures can reveal some of our goofiest and unflattering pictures alike, but they are by far the most memorable parts of any photo shoot. So, next time you’re trying to get that perfect take for your bestie’s Instagram, keep the camera rolling and click away at all of the laughs and priceless moments you share.

Know any other Vogue-worthy photography tips? Let us know in the comments below!

A Trip to the Ringling Museum of Art

Being that I am an art major and that one of my best friends lives in Sarasota, I pretty much started geeking out when I realized how close she lives to the Ringling Museum of Art. This museum has a total of 21 exhibits, ranging from interchanging galleries of contemporary art, to displays of portrait photography. Due to the permanent collections being the only galleries I could take pictures of, I dedicated most of the time I had at the 14th-18th century European art, and the Circus Museum.

The gallery of 14th-18th century European art mostly captured art from the Renaissance era. The combination of beauty and elegant, flourishing creativity during this period is why I’ve always found the “rebirth” period to be one of the most influential movements in history. One piece that really stuck out to me features this snazzy lady right here. Her gown is hands down one of the prettiest articles of clothing I’ve ever seen and she’s holding the tiniest dog to walk the planet.

The circus museum was full of interactive pieces such walking on tightropes and sitting in a clown car, but what really stuck out to me what the fashion. The Ringling Circus was at its peak in the mid-1920s, so obviously the costumes were amazing. Female performers always had the most intricate beading and details on their costumes and this woman’s warm-toned gown matched perfectly with her partner, the elephant’s, costume. The piece definitely gives me Water for Elephants vibes.

How to Conquer the Ringling Museum of Art

1—Bring your student ID. If you’re enrolled at the University of South Florida, Florida State University, State College of Flordia, New College of Florida, Ringling College of Art and Design, or Eckerd College, this is essential. If you are a college student but not enrolled at any of these schools, bring your ID because you will still get a discount! Your ticket will cost only $5 rather than the typical adult ticket which costs $25.

2—Keep track of time and make the exhibits you know you want to see a priority.

3—Bring a bag that can fit everything, including your camera. Walking around a museum, or anywhere in general, with a camera in my hand can be very irritating, and I find that it draws attention to me. I found that just bringing a bigger purse can easily solve the problem. I usually find myself gravitating toward smaller purses, but in situations like these. A shopper or tote is the perfect solution.

How are you going to conquer your next art museum? Let us know in the comments!

We Can’t Help But Love This Trend That Takes Friendship Bracelets To The Next Level

If I had to choose the most valuable thing that I’ve learned from the two plus years that I’ve been interning with CollegeFashionista it wouldn’t be how to frame a street style photo or the key to increased Instagram followers. After all, these are skills that I could’ve picked up anywhere. The greatest asset that I’ve gained from my experience with CF, however, is the knowledge that common experiences, challenges, and interests can bring even the most distant people together. Sounds cliché right? “CollegeFashionista connected me with my best friends” sounds like a tagline written by a mediocre marketing team; but, in all honesty, some of the most important people in my life wouldn’t be there without the help of CollegeFashionista.

So what does this have to do with tattoos? Well, it just so happens that sparking new friendships isn’t all that interning at CollegeFashionista can lead to. In this case, it also caused these four former interns (hint: one of them is me) to get matching ink, and yes, I mean the permanent kind. So here goes:

Tattoos by @jason_tat2 at Black Fish Tattoo (39 W. 32nd St. #1205, New York, NY) 

Emily Ciavatta (@emilyciavattaa) and I met about a year ago when we were both marketing interns at the CollegeFashionista offices. Despite being from totally different backgrounds and having completely opposite personalities, we clicked pretty much right away. We both ended up back in NYC interning this summer and basically made a pact to do as many spontaneous things as possible. We had planned this big, eventful Saturday one week and had an open time slot that needed to be filled, so naturally, tattoos popped into both of our minds. Deciding to get a tattoo isn’t the hard part, it’s figuring out what to actually get that can be tricky.

We ended up getting matching champagne cork tattoos. I have this weird thing about champagne corks. I always save them. Since champagne is usually a celebratory drink, it seems fitting to try and remember the event at which you are drinking it. When we were trying to think up tattoos to get, corks seemed fitting. The corks turned out so cute and we’ll always have CollegeFashionista to thank for bringing us together and celebrate our friendship forever.

Tattoos by Juan Ortega at Mischief Tattoo (329 6th Ave. New York, NY) 

“Cece and I met while interning together at the CollegeFashionista offices last fall. We didn’t talk much at first. But then one day, we were sent on an errand together and after an hour in, we were ranting about our boy problems. From then on, we’ve been super close. We were sitting at work together on a Friday, deciding what our plans for the night should be but weren’t sure what to do. Cece brought up getting matching tattoos—super spur of the moment—and she chose the design and everything. We walked into Mischief near West 4th and got them.” – Megan Sharp (@n_agem)

“I’ve always loved the look of small, simple tattoos, and that’s something that Megan and I always bonded over. We decided one day that we’d get matching ones just for fun. We were working together one Friday and just thought of the idea to both get the word ‘doll’ on the backs of our necks. So, that same day we went and got them done. I love all my little tattoos because they each have their own meaning. Megan is one of my dearest friends, she’s my doll for life.” – Cece Giglio (@cecegiglio)

Would you ever get matching tattoos with a friend? Share your thoughts (or photos of your matching ink!) in the comments below. 

Perfect Plans for a New York City Adventure

New York City is filled with fun street art and beautiful views. And let’s not forget the amazing shopping and delicious treats that make the Big Apple perfect for your next weekend adventure. Every corner of Manhattan offers something to do and something to see, so don’t forget to hit all the hot spots on your next trip over to New York City.

Soho is huge on graffiti murals where you can stop for your picture-perfect Instagram shot. Soho is where we found this fun and colorful mural. This Fashionista is rocking a baby blue and white striped dress with simple black sandals. The fun is all in awe multi-colored crossbody bag, which is covered in pom-pom details. This bag turns a simple outfit into a  fun and trendy look that fits in well with New York City’s aesthetic. With all the walking that comes with a city adventure, a light flowy dress and some comfy sandals are ideal on a hot summer day.

Once you get that golden Instagram photo, next stop is the treats. The city offers an array of food, with something for everyone. You can get anything from cereal ice cream to pizza in a cone. So make sure you plan ahead of time what treat you’re going try first. This Fashionista took a detour to Juicy Lucy’s juice bar for some vibrant colored smoothies filled with fresh fruits.

A New York City trip isn’t complete until you experience the awesome shopping that is offered. This is hard to resist with a Forever 21, Macy’s, and cool boutique at every corner. For your next trip to NYC don’t forget to hit all the spots and plan ahead to make traveling from spot to spot easy and chic.

What are your favorite New York City spots? Let me know in the comments below!

How I Landed My Dream Internship

By pursuing a creative career I have had to work harder than most of my peers in order to differentiate myself. While challenging, it has been so genuinely fun and worthwhile—mostly because I landed my ideal internship with the visual display team at Anthropologie! So here are three very basic tips for any Fashionista who is pursuing a creative career.

Get Involved

I can’t stress this enough—clubs, internships, and extracurricular organizations are your best friend. I am part of an academic society, a student director of an art gallery in downtown Raleigh, as well as being the director of photography for an annual fashion show on campus! Colleges offer so many opportunities to explore outside of your major, meet like-minded people, and network with industry professionals. All of my experiences have given me the kind of professional skills that you can only get by putting yourself out there and getting involved!

Try New Things

College is one of the few times in your young adult years that you will have resources to step outside your comfort zone. If you have the opportunity to study abroad and take classes outside your major, do it. Want to learn a new technique? Ask a professor or skilled peer for a little private session! I am a fibers and fashion student, and when I took a shine to woodworking, the pros in the college’s wood shop were more than happy to help me. I’m so glad I stepped outside of my comfort zone for that because being able to use power tools is a huge reason why I got my internship!

Be Well Rounded

In life, and with creative careers especially, you never want to be a one trick pony. If you are interested in technical fashion design, be sure you are familiar with couture techniques as well. If you are interested in digital photography, try your hand at film sometime! Be a creative student with a killer GPA, because as important as your portfolio is, understanding the ins and outs of written communication is essential as well.

You may be confused as to why I have busted my buns to cover my carefully curated outfit with a paint-splattered apron and sketchbook in hand day after day, but I couldn’t be happier. I have loved Anthropologie since I was following my mom around the store as a child. In the past few years, it became very clear to me that I wanted to bring my creative energy and skills to the fashion industry, and what better way to do that than to build the displays and curate the environment of one of the most enchanting retail spaces in the industry? I work hard in school and creative endeavors, put myself out there, and build connections with people to afford myself opportunities with my dream company—and you can too!

Are you a Fashionista doing something rad with your summer? Show us on social media and be sure to tag @CFashionista!

Wild Style

“Wild, wild, wild… When I’m with you, all I get is wild thoughts.” Let me just say that this song has been on repeat in my brain since it was released. I think we can all agree that “Wild Thoughts” is definitely this summer’s anthem, next to “Despacito,” of course. The video captures the heat of the summer and the sultry, dewy look everyone has been trying to emulate. This summer aesthetic inspired me to create a similar look that has enough vibrancy and heat for half the cost.

Vibrant, Bold Colors

First, what drew me in were Rihanna’s electric blue shadowed eyes and bold red lip. This look popped up repeatedly on my Instagram’s discover page and I can’t get enough. I’m in love with the whole vibe: Miami nights, bright colors, over the top jewelry—give me more, please! I’m obsessed with Rihanna’s outfits in the music video. Her staple orange, vintage Betsy Johnson sheer top definitely stole the show. The top was my main focal point for my inspired look. As I watched the rest of the video, I indulged in the fashion—Balenciaga floral L\leggings that could probably pay my tuition and that dress! The iconic turquoise Alberta Ferretti peasant dress. It’s practically a tropical runway fairytale.

Now Make It Your Own

Now, of course, I can’t afford Balenciaga, but these looks inspired me to create something a little more wearable and definitely more affordable. Keeping the warm bright colors in mind I chose an orange silky peasant top from Forever 21 that will make your pockets and hearts very happy. The sleeves are ruffled with a beautiful split neckline detail. Since the top was definitely the main focus for this outfit, I paired it with a simple jean miniskirt.

Lastly, the jewelry in this look is simplistic with the gold necklace that complements the orange and doesn’t distract from the top. Finishing off the look, I wore block heels with tan leather straps. This outfit is super easy and very versatile. It can go from day to night and will add a punch of Rihanna’s style to your wardrobe.

What summer jams inspire your style? Let me know in the comments below. Be sure to share your style with @CFashionista on social media to give us some inspiration too.

San Francisco’s Must-See Summer of Love Exhibit

In honor of The Summer of Love’s 50th anniversary, San Francisco’s very own de Young museum is celebrating this historical event with a spectacular exhibition. I attended on the opening day, three hours before catching a plane ride home. For those who haven’t the slightest idea of what the Summer of Love is, don’t fret. I’ll be guiding you through the museum’s immersive experience, and how the iconic Summer of Love affected history itself.

So, what is the Summer of Love? In 1967, as many as 100,000 hippies gathered in San Fransisco. They showed off their eccentric fashion and behavior in Haight-Ashbury. They are known as the “Flower Children.” This group was not afraid to be themselves, protest for what they believed in, and create art. Go ahead and take a listen to “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” by Scott McKenzie. This will give you an idea of the culture that the flower children created in San Francisco.

The de Young museum displays include psychedelic rock posters, interactive light shows, music, and countless clothing items from the sixties. The clothing on display features vivid colors, unusual textures, and innovative designs. But what else would you expect from the sixties? The San Franciscan music, fashion, and art scene all influenced each other in an amazing way, making everything flow seamlessly together.

If you’ve read this article or seen the exhibit and feel inspired, getting the San Franciscan “Flower Child” look is easy. Just travel down to your nearest vintage store. Look out for embroidered peasant blouses, bell bottom jeans, and suede fringe jackets. If wearing old clothing doesn’t appeal to you, you’re in luck. Sixties style has influenced today’s fashion trends, and you can find hippie-inspired looks by countless brands.

But, embracing the Summer of Love movement doesn’t have to only be through fashion. In fact, that’s not what it’s truly about. It’s all about being creative, open-minded, and free-spirited. This summer, go out and create something that speaks to you!

Let me know in the comments below how you spent your Summer of Love!

Appreciating Art Isn’t As Intimidating As You Think

Some people might tell you that taking in a work of art is the same as gazing at a flower or a sunset. While others believe that taking in a sculpture or a painting is intimidating. Art is free flowing; there is no exact science or logic to art, which can make museum-going a little uncomfortable for those just dipping their toes into the art world.

While gallery-hoping may not be as simple as looking up at the clouds, there is no reason to be intimidated. Art should be appreciated by everyone, so here are a few easy steps that will lead you down the path to truly appreciating art. (Photo via @briannarlowe)

1—How was it made? Take in the stroke patterns or the amount of colors in a painting, or the amount of detail in a sculpture or photographing. Noting the details of a piece creation will provide insight on how much work went into the piece.

2—What is it made out of? Many artists have go-to materials that are either reflective of their time or, simply, of their preference. Learn a little more about the creator of a piece simply by observing whether they used marble or wood, paints or charcoals, thread or yarn. (Photo via @jenvpetrova)

3—How does it make you feel? This one may sound like a cliche, but it is truly important. Art is generally created to be seen, to be shared with an audience. Just like the lyrics to a song are meant to move the listener, artists often intend for their pieces to cause an emotional response. When taking in a piece, see if it reminds you of something else, or stirs up thoughts or emotions you had not considered.

4—How does it connect to other art? Museums and galleries tend to order pieces by time periods or styles. As you take in each piece, see how it compares to those around it. Is there a piece that sticks out among the rest? Which one do find to be the most interesting or complex? (Photo via @madelinekf)

You don’t have to have an Master’s in art history in order to appreciate the beauty or intensity of a piece. You simply have to have a watchful eye and an open mind. Have any other tips for those interested in art? Let us know in the comments below!

The One L.A. Museum That’s Actually Worth the Wait

Waiting. It’s just another part of life. Waiting in a line while your precious vacation time slips away, however, is not how most of us imagine spending our much needed time off. On a recent trip to sunny Los Angeles, I managed to find one museum that’s actually worth the wait—after all, what better way to make up for lost pool time than to be surrounded by art?

The Broad is a contemporary art museum, located in downtown L.A., known for its unique architecture, exclusive installations, free general admission, and with that, a notoriously long line. As someone who typically travels on a tight budget, finding a free museum is equivalent to finding a soulmate. (The latter of which I have not found yet, but I’m assuming this is how it will feel.) So, for me, waiting for a free experience was something I was more than willing to do. On top of that, being an art lover myself, simply being in the same space as original pieces by artists such as Basquiat and Warhol was enough to justify the wait.

After my first visit to The Broad, here are my recommendations:

Get in Line Early

To give you a general idea of this line: The museum opens at 11 a.m., I entered the line around 11:10 a.m. and didn’t get into the museum until around 1 p.m. In hindsight, it was a long time to wait, but I managed to make a few friends in line and the time sped by.

Prepare to Wait in the Sun

The museum has courtesy umbrellas that they hand out to keep the sun off you once it starts warming up—which, in L.A., happens quickly—but if your skin is sensitive to the sun, I’d recommend putting on a little SPF before you get there.

Bring a Snack

They don’t allow drinks or food inside the museum, but I’d suggest bringing water and a light snack to keep yourself occupied while in line. When you’re done inside, food trucks are steps away from the exit, or you could walk to the Grand Central Market just a few blocks away!

Take Your Time

Now that your wait is over, take the time to internalize the art around you! Take photos, read the artists’ statements, and admire the architecture. From Andy Warhol and Jean-Michael Basquiat to Jeff Koons and Barbara Kruger, The Broad has so many beautiful pieces you won’t want to miss. Other museums I’ve come across may have housed the same artists, but the works curated here are by far the most compelling.

While there seems to be an endless list of things to do while in L.A., be sure to put “Visit The Broad” at the top.

Which L.A. museum is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below!

The Muse

Every artist has a muse. Whether this muse is a scandalous lover or someone you just met on the street, every muse has a story. My muse happens to be a long deceased woman whom I have no relation with, and whose life story is virtually opposite of mine. Yet, nevertheless, her art is one that has made me want to create, to nearly have me at wits ends ninety-nine percent of the school year, and has me gasping for bigger and better ideas at the end of the day.

My muse is Frida Kahlo. A woman whose life story has no correlation with mine, which may be why I love her so much. Her bold and unapologetic nature of using colorful or seemingly brash palettes, her mysterious and otherworldly creations reaching into the innermost center of her soul, and not to mention her incredible knack for amazing fashion, Frida is the reason why I got into art.

I’ve always been creative. As a kid, I would have a sketchbook in hand wherever I went. I can’t say that most people might have known what they wanted to be as a child, but I knew that there had to be an artistic flair to what I would study.

Going into university, I seemingly pushed my artistic nature to the back burner and went for something totally different—marine biology. I would change to journalism, communication, and social media studies, until I landed on my current passion of graphic design—still always looking back for inspiration in Frida.

Whenever I felt unsure or stressed about life, art was the medium that could relieve at least some of my woes. Art museums, documentaries, or creating a chaotic scene in my room filled with tattered magazines or my photographs would calm my senses. I knew, even if it didn’t occur to me, that the art world would always be my home.

Now, I know that not everyone loves art. However, finding one’s muse isn’t just limited to finding a person create a portrait for. Finding a muse is like finding a puzzle piece—it’s not the finished product or even the field you wish to go into, but it does lead you to finding where you are supposed to be. Finding Frida and her world of paintings, photographs documenting her journey, and textiles coloring her life all inspire me to do more. Be bold, be creative, be sassy.

Finding a muse for your life isn’t very hard, there’s a whole website built for flowing your creative juices, Pinterest. If you don’t want to be pinning all day, go to museums, to concerts, documentaries, indie films, try new foods, explore your city in a new way. Inspiration can appear in all walks of culture, entertainment, business, medical, really whichever field you might be interested in. All you have to do is be open to new things and you will find your muse.

Who’s your muse? Tell us what inspires you below in the comments!