The first question you might ask photographer Christi Williams, owner of Grinkie Photography, is what the “Grinkie” in the name means. The second question is how she transitioned from doing traditional photography to specializing in pin-up photography, which she does under the moniker “Grinkie Girls.”
“Grinkie,” explains Christi, “is what my husband called his blanket when he was little, and I loosely translate that to mean ‘thing I love.’ I love photography and taking pictures of people.” The love of the art led Christi to open her own studio a little over two years ago. She started out doing traditional photography of weddings, newborns, graduates, and the like. But she also found she really enjoyed doing boudoir photos.
Building on her boudoir experience, she decided to move toward doing something a bit more fun and light, and thus the pin-up photography idea was born. She launched Grinkie Girls about 18 months ago and has never looked back.
Grinkie Girls provides people with a fun, unique and yes, sassy, photo-shoot experience. And that experience of getting your photo taken is just as important as the end result to Christi, so she makes sure you have fun while you are with her. And, as an extreme extrovert and someone who can read people easily, it’s pretty difficult not to have fun when you are under Christi’s care.
You can liken it to a party. And in fact, Christi specializes in pin-up parties.
Whether you are a party of one doing a pin-up session or a party of 20, Christi and her “Girl Friday” (yes, that’s what she calls her assistant) make sure you have everything you need when you arrive at her studio. Wardrobe? Check. Christi has something for all shapes and sizes in a room full of vintage clothing. Make up and hair? Taken care of. Christi contracts with local make-up artists and hair stylists to make sure you look marvelous.
Her only rule: you only get one alcoholic drink until a good photo is taken.
And really, that’s what the pin-up parties are all about: getting some great photos and having a fabulous time creating special memories with friends. She’ll take as long as needed to make sure you are satisfied – not only with the end result, but also with how you felt during the session.
But, the fun isn’t over when the photo shoot ends. Every three months, Grinkie Girls holds a Calendar Contest. Everyone who’s had their picture taken over the last three months is entered, and people can vote for their favorite for one week. The winners – who receive a sash as well as wild accolades – appear in the next calendar.
In addition to the pin-up calendar, Christi is launching this month a pin-up magazine, appropriately called MN-Ups. This quarterly publication will feature an assortment of pin-up photography, an event calendar, a spotlight on a local artist, and a centerfold contest. The magazine is free and will be distributed at a variety of local businesses.
To celebrate the release of the premier issue of MN-Ups, a release party is taking place on Friday, February 15 at Dangerous Man Brewery located at 1300 2nd St., NE in Minneapolis.
So whether it’s traditional photography you’re after, or you want to transform into a sassy pin-up girl for a bit, you can’t go wrong with Christi and Grinkie. Check out her websites for more information: Grinkie Photography and Grinkie Girls.