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The Bay Area is teeming with indie design talent. We stalk the new collections online and dutifully shop the wares at local boutiques. But it?s rare that we get to see the designers living among us.

So we were thrilled to hear about The Bay: Creators of Style exhibit at Gallery Carte Blanche. In it, fashion photographer Liz Caruana shows intimate black-and-white portraits of notable local clothing and accessory makers, including Camelia Skikos, Priya Saraswati of Saffron Rare Threads and Mina Caragay of Dear Mina.

Caruana developed relationships with many of these designers after years of working with them on editorial shoots and advertising campaigns; her work has appeared in everything from Food & Wine magazine to FluffyCo look books. She wanted to turn the lens around on them and reveal their personalities, as she did in her portrait of Zoë Hong, armed with her tool belt, scissors and a wry smirk. More photos are featured in the book Caruana put together by the same name.

Caruana says this is just the first installment in a series of photographs featuring Bay Area icons; she has her trained eye on local politicians, tech tycoons and film directors. We can?t wait to see who she captures next.

Through February 13 at Gallery Carte Blanche, 973 Valencia St.; 415-821-1055 or

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