Posts in Fashion shoot
Sweatshirt Collection 4 - Visual Narrative Building

As a designer, when the funds are low but you have an idea for your next collection, in this instance sweatshirts, what do you do? You just have to get your creative hat on and think outside the box. It has got me thinking about how I can utilise my ideas, get the collection styled and shoot in a way that helps my brand message get across in a clear and succinct way.

Reflecting on my previous collections, the ones I have really enjoyed the most have been the location shoots. I really like the backdrop of the city and the urban vibe lends itself so well to my brand image. Plus it’s free. This time it needs to have a completely different feel so no comparisons can be drawn.

IMG_4242.jpeg

The image I am drawn to a lot is this one, which has been in my photo album for quite some time, sadly I cannot credit the designer due to it being a screenshot; must remember to make notes in the future. I really like the styling and the use of the market. However I think this concept has been already utilised in various famous campaign images before. So I want to be mindful of not repeating the aesthetic but to take inspiration from this type of space and mix it up a little.

IMG_4252.jpeg

This image is from the Versace collaboration with M.I.A, who is a singer that I really admire, and this image, again captures an energy where the model looks empowered set against the backdrop of the inner city urban environment. If I am correct, I think this was shot on Ridley Road market in Hackney, London; a space that has always been on my wish list and again, is very cost effective. I think the preparation will be key here with the styling in terms of switching up the looks.

Now I need to start researching, looking at trends and thinking about how to move both my ideas forward and not forgetting the design, which still need completing. Never a dull day in the life of a creative.

Decisions Decisions

This image I took along side the photographer, Nate, from Nate Visuals, to check the overall aesthetic of the image, which has been placed provisionally on my website to check its visual appeal. It will be replaced with the professional one he shot. What do you think? I am obsessed with the colours and the textured peeling paint. 

FullSizeRender.jpg

This week I have been looking at the proofs from the shoot. My instruction was to select 35 frames from the 600+ shot, ready for retouching. Easy right?

FullSizeRender.jpg

This has to be one of the biggest decisions I have had to make recently and it is pretty anxiety inducing. Mainly because of all of the questions rolling around in my head like is this image right for the page, garment, overall aesthetic? It is like being a kid in a sweet shop - too much choice. 

But after about four days and moving from the definitely no or maybe folder to the definitely yes one, I am happy with my selection. There is always doubt. But I have cross referenced them with my website to see how multifunctional they are, slotting them provisionally in place to see if the narrative is there as well as being loyal to the product and showcasing it effectively. 

FullSizeRender.jpg

It is amazing how analytical you get but there has to be limited distraction so people are drawn to the garments and not a sleeve bunched up here or a a sticker on the base of a shoe there, sounds over the top but details are very important. And I have had a very critical eye. But also critical of myself, why didn't I notice that, straighten that out there. It has been another great learning experiences and one I can look forward to again with new understanding of what to achieve. But of course we have the digital technology to manipulate and get rid of any issues so I am excited to see the photographs once the touch ups have been completed. 

FullSizeRender.jpg

Then the final images can be added to the website and ticked off my vast list of things to do. And then it is looking forward to the exhibition at Stour Space and the magazine launch of gal-dem this month, which will hopefully generate more interest in the brand. On a side note I was thinking about PR and if I should order more business cards to hand out to people at events or whether there is a more interesting way to way to share that information in a visual way???? I need to do some research on this really. Are there new trends on sharing your brand in a physical form that is not too cumbersome to the receiver? 

Anyway, as always, there is no rest for the wicked. So the next plan of actions are to start listing influencers, magazines and stylists I would like to approach along with other channels, which will hopefully inspire both traffic and sales to my website. Being busy is good as it helps the motivation and focus factor. Keep pushing and striving for more knowledge, more ways in which to improve whilst being reflective. And keep reaching out, which is key. 

Third Time's a Charm - Photoshoot Reflections.
FullSizeRender.jpg

The photoshoot happened, I am floating on a sea of happiness and surrealness. Mostly because it happened, as the title suggests, third times a charm but also because it ran so smoothly and the images aesthetically capture what I was hoping for, urban edginess. 

Retail test shot, too bright in the garden.  

Retail test shot, too bright in the garden.  

Behind the scenes, all hands on deck. 

Behind the scenes, all hands on deck. 

Despite only one out of the four models being professional, they all stood up to the plate taking direction well and easing into the shoot more and more as the day went on. 

I think, upon reflection the research and planning helped significantly as the shoot could be guided well based on my location choices in a sequence that flowed allowing time to concentrate on the images. The only change I would make is to have taken more single shots of the girls in the third location but I think there are enough there to crop and manipulate if needs be. I was more interested in the camaraderie between the group and creating a visual message of a strong sisterhood and the narrative that can be derived from that. They looked so good together. 

Love love love these flats, the pink blue and deep red just really work (for me).  

Love love love these flats, the pink blue and deep red just really work (for me).  

IMG_0191.JPG

Aside from that everything else was great, the weather, Nate, the photographer was so professional and his calm nature allowed the models aka my friends to feel secure and relaxed in a situation so removed from their comfort zone by guiding them with each click of the shutter but also because of who they are, calm, collected and supportive of one another really helped the day run smoothly. No divas, no big annoying personalities, it was all good. 

IMG_0172.JPG

I think everything happens for a reason, from the way we met, to the two delays and subsequent rescheduled shoots, to who could make it on the day, it all worked out. I truly am buzzing from the day. It was exhausting as my adrenaline was pumping causing my anxiety to spike but as everything unfolded I felt more relaxed but focused on the vision I wanted to capture that had been in my head and on the walls of my studio for months. I can not wait to see all of the images. I think the selection process is going to be hard.

The day and events leading up to the shoot have spiked my enthusiasm for the brand and how diverse this creative space can be. There is no questioning of how much hard work it is and how there can be significant shifts between the highs and lows but when there is a high, like now, I am feeling so inspired - I am going to embrace it.

IMG_0195.JPG
IMG_0198.JPG

I think it is the range of creative output. From the designing to the printing to the website and the visual research. There is so much to think about and consider but that is what is exciting. It suits my personality, which by my very Piscean nature is changeable. I get bored very easily and what frustrates me is offset by all of the physical creative elements that both challenge me but allow for that creative freedom. I am my own boss. I realise that I have drive and a passion for this, which was cemented by the success of the shoot (I hope). I worked hard at putting it together and thinking about the outcomes, which are seemingly successful and that was what was exciting. It has really made me think about my choices in life, not to be all melodramatic but we should follow our passions shouldn't we? 

Reflecting on my university days, when I was getting ready to graduate I wanted to become a fashion photographer but couldn't afford to pursue it due to financial reasons. Imagine if I had found a way? I found a way to move to Tokyo, I wanted to become a teacher and move to London, which I achieved, I wanted to start my own business. So when I truly want something I make it happen. If only I had down that then. But as we know, things happen for a reason and our paths are either what we go with or what we choose to carve. Now is the time to do more carving I think! 

IMG_0199.JPG

So, next steps are to update the website when I have the images. Oh and go back to the locations and take more pictures of textures, I forgot to do that as I was so focused on the models. I want to collage them together for the digital look book and website. Haggerston really was a great backdrop to the whole visual aesthetic, so I want to incorporate it as much as I can.

Then I need to push the PR side of things. Contact stylists, fashion magazines for a feature or for the t-shirts and sweatshirts to be included, both would be great. Again pushing forward the ethos of the brand, Celebrating Women of Colour

So a busy but exciting month ahead with exhibitions to attend and the publishing of the magazine my advert will be in towards the end of the September. I really am happy with how things have progressed over the last month, long may it continue.  

FullSizeRender.jpg

A captured moment from a video I took. Love these girls for their commitment and patience x