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Halo effect by Scarlett Casciello
Styling Annie Hertikova, make-up Mattie White, hair Eliot McQueenPhotography Scarlett Casciello

Halo, it’s me: this photo story explores the creative potential of light

Inspired by the Halo Effect theory, photographer Scarlett Casciello explores the way beauty can trick and conjure

“I’ve been fascinated by the theory of the Halo Effect for a while and how a person’s perceived beauty could open doors to opportunities and experiences,” says photographer Scarlett Casciello. “What beauty can afford us and how that, in turn, can trick the viewer into believing they have traits or qualities they might not actually possess.”

It’s this idea that is at the heart of Casciello’s new shoot, a dreamy experiment in framing where the model is imagined inside halos of light. For inspiration for the shoot, Casciello and her team, stylist Annie Hertikova, make-up artist Mattie White and hairstylist Eliot McQueen, looked to old Shiseido campaigns by Serge Lutens whose mystical, impressionistic vision of beauty and radical creativity forever changed the way make-up is marketed. Robert Mapplethorpe’s book Lady, a study of bodybuilder and performance artist Lisa Lyon, also served as an influence.

The result is a series of romantic images that draw you in and seduce you. “I want the images to spark emotion and a feeling of getting lost in a world that you can’t really make sense of immediately,” says Casciello.

Photography Scarlett Casciello, styling Annie Hertikova, make-up Mattie White, hair Eliot McQueen, set design Lizzy Gilbert.