Portraiture is a lot of fun but as you develop your style over time, it can be a real challenge to shoot portraits that stand out from the crowd. As photographers, we want to create images that make an impact and that viewers will remember later. One way I like to add a unique element to my images is to create a one-of-a-kind statement piece. With just a few supplies and a little time, I can give my portraits that little extra something.

Statement chokers are easy to make and the creative possibilities are endless. My favorite approach is to find an artificial flower that I like and then add wide ribbon in a complimentary color. All you need is a glue gun to affix the head of the artificial flower to the ribbon and then it easily ties on to your subject’s neck. You can also use it in your subject’s hair for an additional option.

When I have the time to create something really memorable, I go for a full floral crown. These are so much easier to make than you would think and due to the handmade nature, each one is unique. They also are affordable to create

I like to source my supplies from a local craft store or Amazon. For the main floral components I usually look for a composed bouquet in colors I like and that way all the flowers included are already complimentary in size, color and shape/texture. You will also need a Styrofoam disc and plastic or metal headband. To bring everything together I like to use an industrial glue gun.

The first step is to remove the flower heads and leaves from the bouquet and cut the stems short. Next, cut the Styrofoam disc into small pieces that you can glue to the top of the headband. Once you have the Styrofoam in place you can then begin to glue your flowers and leaves onto the headband, covering the Styrofoam. I like to glue the flowers on first and then fill in gaps with the leaves.

The final result is a lightweight piece that you can use in a variety of ways. I like to use natural light outdoors the best when working with a floral crown but variety is key to a diverse portfolio. So grab a glue gun and get started!

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Born and raised on the West Coast, Laura Tillinghast began making art at a young age. She explored many mediums until finally discovering photography when she was 17 years old. From that point on, she knew she had found the tool she was looking for to bring her imagination to life. Shooting primarily advertising and editorial content, you never know what you will find in front of Laura’s lens. Whether it is a gorgeous model, a rock band or a bowl of oatmeal, she shoots with the same goal in mind; make it beautiful. See more of Laura’s work at her website: lauratillinghast.com