Happy Friday! Today’s post is going to be filled with light chasing photography, and of course an outfit pairing.

A few weeks ago, after my friend’s wedding mass, we decided to go shoot a few outfits since we had a few hours to spare before the reception. We drove to the Minneapolis Institute of Art in hope to find a balcony with lots of light. Usually, any museums would have a balcony or resting areas with some sorts of windows or light access. Check out an old but favorite blog post where museum’s balcony lighting did the trick, here. The MIA, however, doesn’t have a balcony or big windows, but we found this little corner with some light peeking through the tiny window.


Besides good lighting, architecture is a big part that we want to incorporate whenever me and my boyfriend are out scouting for locations. I do the styling and modeling, and my boyfriend photographs and is in charge of the visual outcome. He gets inspired after seeing my outfit to shoot it certain ways. We either drive to the location after him seeing what I wear or we change at the spot. As mentioned above, balconies in a museum with windows provide great indirect sunlight. We love rooftops with wide open space with 360-degree access of light and wind. Oh staircases provide a unique opportunity for interesting lines and also lighting, and you can shoot from the bottom up or down. You can go on my Instagram for some architecture photography inspiration.


OUTFIT DETAILS: dress: thrifted | bag: Rebecca Minkoff | sunglasses: Ray-ban

About the outfit: I can’t recall how many black dresses I own at this point. This little backless dress I bought couple years ago at a local outlet for $10. Regardless of it being a size medium, I’ve found myself reaching for it every summer when it’s way too hot outside to even care the too-much-back-exposure. I’d throw on an oversized denim jacket, and the outfit pairing is not only instant but failed-safe that I’d recommend anyone should try. Ok, here is the formula, in short, a little black dress (LBD) + a denim jacket + shoes + bag (optional, since the denim jacket’s pockets can double up as your essential holder if needed to) = failed-safe & instant outfit.

Recently, it’s becoming incredibly difficult for us to find locations to shoot for outfit photos in the Twin Cities since we’ve pretty much been to every photogenic corner. Unlike the west coastal states or bigger city like New York, breathtaking sceneries and incredibly decorative buildings that can act as an outfit backdrop are within reach. The Midwest in general, not so much! However, when we’re scared of the given, we’re forced to be more creative, to make things work, and sometimes the results could be so surprising and rewarding. And these photos are some examples. All you need is some good lighting and an eye for it. I hope you enjoy the photos and that they’ve inspired you to go exploring your own city. And thank you so much for reading!

stay inspired | as always

An Trieu.

Photography by: Toan Chu