going west with libby gray...

A few weeks ago, The Setting hosted an evening in honor of Libby Gray's beautiful photography...

After eight years in New York, Libby decided to head West this past winter to spend five months working, traveling and connecting with old friends in new places. With no formal training, she began documenting her trips across the US and beyond about five years ago and has since expanded her portfolio to include editorials and portraits. Her most recent travels through Paris & Ibiza are especially stunning! Libby's beautiful mother is also a ceramicist and it felt like a natural fit to feature her own creative talent for the launch of our journal. 

This paticular series of photos were taken along the coast of California, the Southwest and even back in New York during a brief return home. Locations include Big Sur, San Francisco, Marfa, New Mexico, the Grand Canyon and Manhattan. All images were taken on the only camera Libby uses – her father’s 1968 Canon FT which he bought while stationed in Vietnam.

In honor of The Setting’s love of entertaining in a more personal way, I asked Libby a few questions regarding her first memories of parties at home and how those experiences have shaped her into the creative she is today.

What are your earliest memories of a party or an event? 

Growing up my parents threw a big brunch party every year the week before Christmas. They started doing it in the 70’s before I was born and it turned into a big tradition that just kept growing in size each year. My mom is an incredible hostess and would leave no detail behind – she really knew how to do it right.

What do you remember most? Smells, visuals, etc. 

Well my sister and I had to help with everything – so that’s what I remember most. We greeted guests, took their coats, handed out drinks, helped my mom in the kitchen. It was a real group effort. The food was the same every year as well – most of which my mom cooked herself and became famous for. The house was always filled with people, the fire going, that sort of thing.

What is one tip that you learned then that you still use today?

There were a lot of little tips along the way, but I think mostly I just learned how to be a gracious hostess. Also prepare as much food the day before as you can!

How did those memories shape you into the creative that you are today? 

Both my parents really taught me to fill my life with family and friends – which is definitely what their brunch was always about. Just lots of love and support!

The Setting