Editorial/Fashion Photography Editorial photography is defined as photographs made to illustrate a story or idea within the context of a magazine. Editorial photographer and fashion photography usually go hand in hand.
The Beginning The idea of photography has been around for centuries. In the 5th and 4th centuries BC Chinese philosopher Mo Di, and Greek mathematicians Aristotle and Euclid described a pinhole camera (a light sealed box with a small hole in it) and the idea of creating a more permanent image. Many mathematicians described, and designed their versions of what we know as cameras and in the early 19th century we got our first photograph. In 1826 the first permanent photograph was made with a camera obscura (optical device that projects an image on a screen)
Progression of Photography Since then photography has evolved into an everyday usable resource. People can take pictures with their phones, their digital cameras, their computers, and almost instantly share them with others. Photography is used for everything from news to advertising to art to a personal memory keeper. My personal favorite remains editorial and fashion photography as an art. Taking an item or person and developing a theme and concept around that and creating art.
Origins ofEditorial and Fashion Photography The first fashion photographer is considered Adolphe Braun who published a book with 288 photographs of a Tuscan noblewomen, VirginaOldoini making her the first fashion model. In the first decade of the 20th century advancement in printing allowed fashion photography to be incorporated into magazines, and first appeared in French magazine La Mode Practique. In 1909 Conde Nast took over vogue and fashion photography really began and started to be recognized as fine art. Edward Steichen took photos of gowns designed by Paul Poiret that were published in the April 1911 issue of Art et Decoration. According to Jesse Alexander, This is "...now considered to be the first ever modern fashion photography shoot. That is, photographing the garments in such a way as to convey a sense of their physical quality as well as their formal appearance, as opposed to simply illustrating the object." Many people contributed to the development of fashion photography, and the way it was shot. The relationship between designer, the model, the photographer, the actual design of the photograph. This was the beginning. Vouge and Harpers Bazaar soon became the leaders in fashion photography starting in the 1920’s and 1930’s
The Leaders and Innovators One of my favorite photographers, and one of the reasons I am passionate about fashion and editorial photography is Richard Avedon. He redefined the title of fashion photographer. He incorporated current events and photojournalism, into his fashion shots. He took more artistic direction with his work, and did more than just shoot a dress. He told a story . Essentially, that is what editorial fashion is. The telling of a story through a series of photographs. If you say the name Annie Leibovitz, I think most would at the least know her name and that she is a photographer. She is the most widely known photographers today. Because of Richard Avedon, and the other innovators of fashion photography this is true.
The Process “It’s not that hard to do, you are just taking a picture.” In reality it can take fifteen hour days to finish a shoot, and then countless hours in post after that A photographer must collaborate to get the photo, they aren’t just clicking the shutter.
The People Involved Along with a photographer a successful shoot has a Art director-Unifies the vision of the artists behind the art piece and work to make the overall image to send the right message and mood, controlling what artistic styles to use. Stylist-In charge of wardrobe, and accessories, correlating them with the theme of the shoot. Whether they are time period accurate, whether the are the focus of the shoot or just an accent, its all in their hands Set Designer-Controls the set, whether it needs to be made in a studio or managed in a park. Works with props and other equipment to set the scenic mood Models –I feel this one is a given Makeup/Hair- Works mainly with the Stylist and models to create an image that fits the overall mood Lighting and other Crew members to help with equipment (Like holding the reflector) All these people must work together to create a symbiotic theme, and portray that in the photograph
Themes Personally, I think the most interesting and captivating editorial spreads are when the concept is very strongly themed Parodies, tributes, time pieces etc. are all examples of this
One of Richard Avedon’s earliest fashion shoots
Videos to watch, more behind the scenes http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7C-wgGOb73A Bert Spangemacher and 1919 creative director Peter Klueger, joined forces to create and execute a hyper-realistic photo layout for the August issue urban lifestyle magazine YRB. This dynamic creative team collaborated on every aspect of the spread from inspiration to concept boards to production and realization. The result was a mix of art direction and photography that has realism, guts and energy. Riot Acts is a fashion story with models in satin gowns appearing to be part of a political street riot as the wrestle and are beaten by the crowd control police a tribute to 1960s-style demonstrations. Stylistically we wanted a journalistic edginess that feels out of the moment, spontaneous. There were fire hydrants gushing, oil barrels on fire and hard core police cracking down on the demonstrators. A journalistic approach to a fashion story is truly a surreal event. Almost a satire." continued Klueger. Our concept was motivated by the current political climate and fantasizing about the cultural freedoms of a western society -in which anything goes- until the fashion police steps in, said Spangemacher. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_AbAGZ_v2U http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_kxLqHrNho (first part passion)