Some people may get nauseous during the lead up to Valentine’s Day, but thankfully, that’s not the case for Danyel LaTour. A huge fan of anything cheesy and slightly sentimental, she thinks the big V-day gives her the perfect excuse to craft valentines for friends and family.
Lucky for us, her love of all things valentines inspired her to create these gorgeous installations, which were photographed specifically for cupid’s holiday.
What were some of your inspirations for this LOVE image?
Anyone who has ever hiked in the redwood forests outside the Bay Area knows that there’s something magical and truly inspiring about that area. The sun cuts through the tree tops and lights up the moss, setting it aglow. It’s one of the most romantic places in the world!
Talk us through what’s happening in this image. Who is that with the paintbrush?
That’s Erin, one of our amazing stylists. She’s cleaning up all of the little bits of moss that have fallen out of place. It took us a few hours to set up this shot, with lots of trial and error and little tweaks to get it to read correctly and fit in our crops. It’s difficult to create type with natural elements, and we tried our best to make it look as organic as possible and have the moss installation still retain a wild edge to convey that glowing feeling you get in the redwoods.
What are you listening to when you’re styling something so overtly all about LOVE?
For this shoot, everyone got a chance to play DJ. The studio was filled with oldies like the Drifters, James & Bobby Purify and Ricky Nelson.
If someone were to prepare a goodie bag of V-day treats for you, what would you want to find inside?
Candy! Haribo is my go to when I want candy. My philosophy is that gummy anything is good any time! But right now I can’t get enough of Baobab Dark Chocolate Bars; they are seriously addicting! I am also a sucker for nostalgic things. Every holiday my mother would get us kinder chocolates (the hippos being my favorite) and to this day I still feel like a kid when I smell chocolate and hazelnut.
How in the world did you create a perfect heart shape?
With lots of trial and error! When creating big laydown shots like the heart, we start with lots of product and slowly take things away to form the shape. The fun for me is finding ways to use products differently— like candy spilling out of a takeout box to form a curve.
Curating a perfect little gift bag or gift box for someone you care about can be tricky. What are some of your tips for preparing a fun, thoughtful and V-day perfect gift?
I think useful gifts are always appreciated by the person you’re giving them to and really pleasurable to give as well. I love giving “practical splurges” like your favorite chapstick or that imported French soap you only buy yourself once a year. But I think the best gifts always involve something homemade, whether it be cookies or a little poem.