With the launch of a new collaboration comes the opportunity for an epic photoshoot, and this time the team found ourselves in Las Vegas, on the home turf of Nappytabs. With their busy schedules we were fortunate enough that Tabitha and Napoleon could fit us in for the day to get the pictures we needed for the launch of their new collection, 'Evolution'. Designing this collection with such artistic and creative individuals has been an absolute blessing and spending the afternoon with them chatting about their careers, parenting and of course their new line, was the perfect way to spend an afternoon for this goldsmith.
We arrived at their house on a beautiful and warm Nevada day, perfect weather for an outdoor shoot. Their home was easy to find as it was full on decorated for Halloween. There were spiderwebs covering the walkway, skulls for door knockers and inflatable ghosts on the lawn. Due to our last minute rescheduling, both of them are on separate laptops having business meetings when we arrive. In the living room Napoleon is designing the final touches of a staircase for an upcoming show and on the patio Tabitha is chatting about rehearsal times for another upcoming performance. Just a day in the life of two of the most well known creative directors in the business.
The next few hours led us through the two of them seeing their jewelry line fully completed and in front of them for the first time. The team then headed out to Red Rock Canyon to take pictures of the two of them in their element. The canyon is near to where they live and a place they frequent about 2 to 3 times a week to unwind and find that balance between family time and work time. In fact, they had just been there the week before to celebrate Napoleon's birthday with a day trip to a hot springs.
While I had spoken with them on the phone several times over the past year as we designed their collection, spending time with them in person was the icing on the cake for this project. Our entire team left that day feeling like we have known them for years. While I knew that I was in for a fun afternoon with creatives in the desert, what I wasn't anticipating was the amount of laughing this shoot would bring. Not only are they incredibly kind, but they are both absolutely hilarious as well.
During the course of the afternoon we had the chance to chat with them about their careers, parenthood and what is on the horizon for them.
Having spent the majority of their careers working and performing together as a team these two really do represent the definition of a dynamic duo.
How did the two of you meet?
Napoleon: We met way back in college through some mutual friends. She was on the cheer team and they recruited me and some of my friends to be on the team. My friends and I didn't want to have to dance and do all the cheer dance moves, so we told them we could throw them around if they need us to but that we didn't know how to dance.
Tabitha: Yeah he totally lied. A few weeks later I saw him taking a jazz class and he was busted. It was a game changer for me.
So when did you feel like your dance careers really started to change and evolve?
Napoleon: We were asked to be on America's Best Dance Crew and then at the same time So You Think You Can Dance called and asked us to be on that as well. It was a really hectic time for us, but we both felt they were such great opportunities that we had to make it work. Then things just started progressing really quickly from there.
With your extensive careers and all of the projects you have worked on, are there any in particular that really stick out to you as special?
Tabitha: I think for me it was the Super Bowl with Jennifer Lopez, not only because it's the Super Bowl, but because we got to work on it together.
Napoleon: Yeah for sure, Tabitha had worked on the Super Bowl for Madonna, but this was the first one we got to create together. Being able to work on a project like that together was amazing.
If you have followed their careers you will have noticed that the two of them are parents. London, who is nine, travels with them almost everywhere and is no stranger to their fast paced lifestyle.
It can be really hard wearing all the hats. Managing your professional lives, personal lives and of course being parents. How do you manage all of this? Balance your careers while raising a son and what does he think of your careers?
Tabitha: London has always been with us. We take him almost everywhere we go. So being part of a rehearsal with dancers or back stage at a show is just kind of normal life for him.
Napoleon: Yeah he is only nine and he's just used to it. He doesn't really grasp just how cool his mom is. He started taking hip hop lessons and he will come home from class and show his mom something and Tabitha will be like "You should try it like this." and London says," That's not how my teacher told me to do it Mom."
Tabitha (laughing): And he is just starting to learn that you don't just get everything, you have to work for it. We were just at a convention and we were pulling some of the dancers up on stage and he just assumed that he could come up on stage too and we had to explain to him that you have to work hard and be good, that is how you get on stage. You don't just get on stage because we are your parents. So now he has taken that to heart and I have noticed that he is always off on the side working hard and practicing because he REALLY wants to get up on that stage.
Napoleon: He is definitely a performer though. Like last week he made this huge haunted house and there was an escape room in the garage the kids had to get out of. He was chasing them out with a fake chainsaw.
Tabitha (showing us the video on her phone): It was awesome. He put a lot of work into it. Mommy might have helped out a bit with the production of it.
With everything you have accomplished so far in your career and all of the people you have worked with. If you could just snap your fingers and make everything fall into place, who is somebody you would love to work with in the future?
Napoleon: I would love to work with Bruno Mars, he is amazing.
Tabitha: I was going to say Bruno Mars too. He is so talented that creating something with him would be so much fun.
Napoleon: We are both really big country music fans too. So working with someone in country music would be a dream come true. Garth Brooks would be so awesome.
This is your first time designing a jewelry collection. What do you think of the process?
Tabitha: It has been really fun to be on the other side of things. Usually I have an artist who comes to me with ideas and a design concept and it is my job to execute that and make it a reality. This time it was the other way around, which was a lot of fun and different than what I am used to.
What are some of the ideas and concepts you really wanted to get across with this collection?
Tabitha: I really like the ideas of different textures and shapes mixed into the same piece. When I started researching different jewelry styles that I liked I kept coming back to the geometric shapes, square and circles. I really loved the idea of smooth shapes and straight lines mixed together. In a way I feel like that represents how Napoleon and I are. We are two different people who bring different ideas creatively and when we work together we blend those different ideas to make something cohesive. I also really like the idea of change and versatility. As an artist you are always changing and evolving. I am not the same person day to day creatively and I shouldn't have to be either.
Napoleon: I remember thinking the shapes and lines of our style of dance might not translate well into jewelry.
Tabitha: Agreed. I also didn't want us to stick to just one genre of dance or design ourselves into a box. There are so many things that we do now and so many different styles that I wanted to make sure that was all represented.
Napoleon: These 5,6,7,8 pieces are perfect. This is us, this is our lives but as a piece of jewelry. It is just great. Tabitha nailed it on that one.
Their very first collection of jewelry entitled, Evolution, is inspired by the growth and artistry that lives inside all of us. Evolution launches November 12.
To view the collection CLICK HERE.
To view Nappytabs website CLICK HERE.
Photography by Tonya Wanner Photography
Makeup by Vamp Makeup / Green Tree Beauty