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  • Writer's pictureLaura Green


Back in August 2020, I saw FunBoy release these amazing "kiddie pools" & it just sparked something in me. I absolutely NEEDED to find a way to include it into a photoshoot. I had seen some photos on Instagram from the fabulous Hannah Jensen & it threw me into a rabbit hole to create the ULTIMATE "Hot Girl Summer" inspired photoshoot.

How did SUMMER NOSTALGIA come to life?

I wanted this shoot to be modern with a hint of nostalgia. I find that to be a common aesthetic nowadays, especially on TikTok. Everything is a throwback, but with a modern twist. The idea of a kiddie pool in the front yard just reminded me of running through the sprinklers as a kid back in the 90's. I really wanted the shots to have that sort of feeling so I hit up my girl, Jasmine. She currently lives in her grandma's old house in Fullerton and it really embodies that feeling of being a kid, ESPECIALLY because she spent her own childhood there.

I reached out to someone I knew who could embody the idea of "Hot Girl Summer" perfectly...Mercedes. She has such a unique look & I knew she could really bring the heat. Luckily, even though we had never shot together at the time, she agreed. Unfortunately, due to it being peak Covid and too late in the summer in 2020 to make it happen, we had to wait. And honestly, I think sitting on this concept for an entire year before shooting was the BEST idea.

My Materials

The first order of business was buying my INCREDIBLE "kiddie pool". Not sponsored (I wish I was), but FunBoy has the SICKEST pool floats & summer gear EVER. I definitely recommend checking them out if you have access to a pool.

Here is a link to all of their "kiddie pool" selections:

& here is the link to the EXACT "kiddie pool" we used in the shoot:

& if you're interested in the MANY amazing pool floats to make your IG photos shine, click here:

The sunglasses I purchased are no longer available on the site I got them from as it was over a year ago, but the same pair is available on Amazon if you're looking to snag your own:

The flamingos I snagged are also available on Amazon:

I read quite a few yard flamingo reviews to find the perfect ones. I looked through all the photos to find ones I knew would be extra photo worthy and these were the ones I settled on. They now live happily in Jasmine's yard as I have nowhere for them to go.

This is not pictured or shown in the photos, but I also grabbed an electric air pump that's completely cordless & portable. I am honestly SHOOT at how great it ended up being. It helped us blow up the pool in less than 10 minutes and it's entirely rechargeable. If you wanted to bring ANY inflatable on the go, I highly recommend checking it out. Click here for the link!

The Actual Photoshoot Experience

Setting up for this shoot took about 30 minutes from start to finish. With the electric air pump, the pool was inflated in about 10 minutes tops. Filling the pool with the hose was probably what took the longest. The flamingos were super easy to adjust and move as they just stick straight into the grass.

The only unplanned aspect we added in was shooting the hose in the background of some images to potentially add in some layers to the final shot.


Like I said before, I really wanted this shoot to feel nostalgia. While keeping my colorful editing style, I tried to incorporate some color tones like greens and pinks that would be prevalent in old film or polaroids. I messed around heavily in Lightroom in order to create the perfect preset that would feel like ME, but still give the viewer that small throwback vibe.

Once they were all colored, I just sent everything to Photoshop for retouching, a little bit of color correcting, and my signature exposure lift to polish the whole thing off. These are some of my favorite shots this year, which is saying a lot since I also did the disco ball shoot back in January. But these just really seem personal & I love the final product.

P.S. I hate how this Before & After looks like I did nothing, but it took me FOREVER. LOL.

The Final Photo

I had SO MUCH FUN doing this shoot! Summer Nostalgia was such a vibe & really embodies how I'm feeling about this summer. Thank you to Mercedes & Jasmine for making this vision happen even better than I had originally intended. It's going to be seen all over my portfolio FOR SURE.

If you're interested in checking out the SUMMER NOSTALGIA playlist for songs that compliment this photoshoot, make sure to CLICK HERE to get started!

Please enjoy a full gallery of all of SUMMER NOSTALGIA. Some of these were never posted so here's your full behind the scenes look.

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