ENCHANTED ROCK: MCYMs take Texas

Magic Carpet Yoga Mats owner and designer Sophie Leininger shares personal behind the scenes accounts of MAGIC MAKING here on the blog!  Enjoy and let us know what you think in the comments or on our Facebook page: Facebook.com/magiccarpetyogamats.

The first time I visited Austin, TX was in March of 2013.  It was, in a word: EPIC. I fell in love with Austin at the tail end of SXSW, a city I had heard glowing tales of since my dear friend Shari Gerstenberger moved there years ago.  I had the pleasure of enjoying Shari’s annual daytime SXSW show at Maison d’Etoile (2109 E Cesar Chavez–go find it!), ate breakfast tacos everyday, and made the acquaintance of many sparkling humans. But most special of all was shooting this series on the Spring Equinox at Enchanted Rock, a few hours outside of town.

Shari, owner of Charm School Vintage and photoshoot genius, styled the shoot and assembled the babe army we would take into the desert in her 1960’s Westfalia van. For the full report on how much I absolutely adore Shari, read our interview.  I bumped along in the backseat with our make-up artist Erin Freeman and one of our photographers Ana Mercedes.  We snacked on hummus and got to know each other as cacti began to outnumber buildings and rocks turned from brown to red.  Ana was a mere 20 years old at the time and a student at the University of Texas.  Her photos, however, reflected a deep knowledge of photography and a mature art practice.  My gratitude for her collaboration that day only grows–I’ve followed her analogue photography practice ever since–a real treat and highly recommended.

Riding shotgun was our model, Cecilia Alejandra Blair. Not only is Ceci the sweetest ashtanga yogi you’ve ever met, and an amazing model, she’s also an incredible photographer.  Such a good sport, she scaled and performed yoga poses on the roughest rocks and tip toed around cactus needles to set up the perfect shot.  I was so fun to meet Ceci!  I’ve since followed her travels around the country with her darling rocker husband; watching America unfold through Ceci’s multi-media photographs is absolutely the best way to travel. Also on the scene was Olivia Vale, whose awesome digital photos captured Ceci beautifully.

Enjoy the photos and let us know what you think on our Facebook page: facebook.com/magiccarpetyogamats!

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra.  Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.  Enchanted Rock, TX.

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra. Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage. Enchanted Rock, TX.

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Olivia Vale Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra. Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra.  Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.  Enchanted Rock, TX.

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra. Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage. Enchanted Rock, TX.

Olivia Vale Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra.  Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.

Olivia Vale Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra. Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra.  Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage.  Enchanted Rock, TX.

Ana Mercedes Photography, 2013. Model: Cecilia Alejandra. Styling by Shari Gerstenberger, Charm School Vintage. Enchanted Rock, TX.

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