Part 5. Project 4. Research Point: Fashion Images

In this exercise I am to look at fashion images…and note down which textile qualities the photographer has brought to the fore and how they have achieved this.

Textile qualities taken from course manual; Silhouette, Volume, Drape and Movement

Irving Penn

Image result for irving penn fashion photography
The Irving Penn Foundation. (2019). Fashion — The Irving Penn Foundation. [online] Available at: https://irvingpenn.org/fashion [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image Penn has highlighted the silhouette of the fabric. He has done this with a symmetrical shot of a model using a very central balanced pose. The focus is all on the shape the model is making.

  Christian Lacroix Duchesse Satin Dress , Paris, 1995 Platinum-palladium print © Condé Nast
The Irving Penn Foundation. (2019). Fashion — The Irving Penn Foundation. [online] Available at: https://irvingpenn.org/fashion [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

The focus on this shot is on the volume and drape of the fabric. By removing the models head from the image the focus is drawn entirely to the shapes of the fabric. The small amount of neck and back visible accentuates the traditional hourglass figure which itself is bordered by the puffy shoulder pieces. The voluminous waist created by the fabric further reinforces the hourglass notion of traditional feminine beauty standards.

Mario Testino

Related image
Photogrist Photography Magazine. (2019). Mica Arganaraz and Rianne Van Rompaey by Mario Testino. [online] Available at: https://photogrist.com/mica-arganaraz-rianne-van-rompaey/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image Testino emphasizes the drape and volume of the fabric. He does this by placing the model in front of a doorway of similar colour to the fabric she is wearing, this forces the viewer to actively seek out the edges of the fabric to differentiate her from the surroundings.

MuuMuse. (2019). Daily B: Britney Shoots with Fashion Photographer Mario Testino | MuuMuse. [online] Available at: https://muumuse.com/2010/12/daily-b-britney-shoots-with-fashion-photographer-mario-testino.html/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image Testino highlights the volume of the skirt on the dress Britney Spears is wearing. He does this by showing a dynamic image that gives the skirt its full body.

Richard Avedon

indelible_umbrella.jpg
Edwards, O. (2019). Fashion Faux Paw. [online] Smithsonian Magazine. Available at: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/fashion-faux-paw-69964267/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image Avedon highlights the drape of the fabric. He does this by showing the soft rolls of the coat and its flattering cut even when engaged in quite dynamic pose. The set-up of this image reminds me strongly of this one by Henri Cartier Bresson…

Image result for old photography man jumping into puddle
O’Hagan, S. (2019). Cartier-Bresson’s classic is back – but his Decisive Moment has passed. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/dec/23/henri-cartier-bresson-the-decisive-moment-reissued-photography [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Terry Richardson

Image result for terry richardson fashion photography
Nicefashionphotography.blogspot.com. (2019). Madonna – by Terry Richardson – Nice Fashion Photography. [online] Available at: http://nicefashionphotography.blogspot.com/2014/05/madonna-by-terry-richardson-nice.html [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this photograph of Madonna by Terry Richardson the emphasis is on the silhouette of the fabric. One of the factors commonly associated with Madonnas image is that of being in good shape, of staying young and attractive. This form fitting outfit emphasises her slender figure whilst complimenting the large sword she is posing with.

Related image
Iconolo.gy. (2019). One Size Fits All, V Magazine, Terry Richardson | Iconology. [online] Available at: http://iconolo.gy/archive/one-size-fits-all-v-magazine-terry-richardson/787 [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image by Terry Richardson the emphasis is on the silhouette of the fabric. The whole image has a block like quality. The high contrast style of shooting has taken such an amount of tonal quality out of the image that the model looks as though she is a cut out doll from a magasine.

Sarah Moon

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AnOther. (2019). Sarah Moon on the Passing of Time in Fashion Photography. [online] Available at: https://www.anothermag.com/fashion-beauty/11299/sarah-moon-on-the-passing-of-time-in-fashion-photography [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this photograph by Sarah Moon the emphasis is on the volume of the fabric. The volume is emphasized with the use of the black under layer and up-draught affecting the uppermost layer. In a style reminiscent of Marilyn Munroe the clown-esque figure covers its face to draw our attention back to the textile.

Image result for sarah moon fashion photography
The Eye of Photography Magazine. (2019). Sarah Moon – The Eye of Photography Magazine. [online] Available at: https://loeildelaphotographie.com/en/sarah-moon-about-color/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image the emphasis is on the silhouette of the clothing. This is achieved again with no face to look at and a pose which highlights the hourglass figure. The clean lines of the dresses bodice are highlighted against the blue background. The sensation of movement in the bottom of the skirt ensures that that remains outside the interest of the viewer.

David Lachapelle

I found reading about Lachapelle the most interesting of the selection. Any photographer who just snaps and fires Madonna is worth a bit of investigating!

Looking at his earlier photographic work, I like his cinematic style. Looking (very very briefly) at a couple of his more recent paintings, I like the use of bold colour.

Image result for david lachapelle fashion photography
Artsy.net. (2019). David LaChapelle | Hot Flash, New York (1998) | Artsy. [online] Available at: https://www.artsy.net/artwork/david-lachapelle-hot-flash-new-york [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

In this image the emphasis is on the volume (and colour) of the material. The sense of movement imparted to it is echoed by the dynamic stance of the model, the colour of the models hair and the fireball above the chimneys. The volume is shown off through the swathe of material levitating behind the model.

Related image
Caviar20. (2019). DAVID LACHAPELLE “MY HOUSE” 1997. [online] Available at: https://www.caviar20.com/products/david-lachapelle-my-house-1997 [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

The emphasis in this image is on the drape of the material. The drape on the lady on the left is elegant and classy with its complimentary cut. The drape on the child on the right is a lot more sassy and funky. This is conveyed through the attitude of the model and the clean lines.

The Irving Penn Foundation. (2019). Fashion — The Irving Penn Foundation. [online] Available at: https://irvingpenn.org/fashion [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Photogrist Photography Magazine. (2019). Mica Arganaraz and Rianne Van Rompaey by Mario Testino. [online] Available at: https://photogrist.com/mica-arganaraz-rianne-van-rompaey/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

MuuMuse. (2019). Daily B: Britney Shoots with Fashion Photographer Mario Testino | MuuMuse. [online] Available at: https://muumuse.com/2010/12/daily-b-britney-shoots-with-fashion-photographer-mario-testino.html/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

O’Hagan, S. (2019). Cartier-Bresson’s classic is back – but his Decisive Moment has passed. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/dec/23/henri-cartier-bresson-the-decisive-moment-reissued-photography [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Nicefashionphotography.blogspot.com. (2019). Madonna – by Terry Richardson – Nice Fashion Photography. [online] Available at: http://nicefashionphotography.blogspot.com/2014/05/madonna-by-terry-richardson-nice.html [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Iconolo.gy. (2019). One Size Fits All, V Magazine, Terry Richardson | Iconology. [online] Available at: http://iconolo.gy/archive/one-size-fits-all-v-magazine-terry-richardson/787 [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

AnOther. (2019). Sarah Moon on the Passing of Time in Fashion Photography. [online] Available at: https://www.anothermag.com/fashion-beauty/11299/sarah-moon-on-the-passing-of-time-in-fashion-photography [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

The Eye of Photography Magazine. (2019). Sarah Moon – The Eye of Photography Magazine. [online] Available at: https://loeildelaphotographie.com/en/sarah-moon-about-color/ [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Trebay, G. (2019). David LaChapelle, From Photographer to Artist. [online] Nytimes.com. Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/29/fashion/david-lachapelle-from-photographer-to-artist.html [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

Artsy.net. (2019). David LaChapelle | Hot Flash, New York (1998) | Artsy. [online] Available at: https://www.artsy.net/artwork/david-lachapelle-hot-flash-new-york [Accessed 28 Dec. 2019].

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Part 5. Project 1. Ex 1

How would you define sustainability?

I would define sustainability as a process which does not cause depletion or damage to resources or environment. For example, if you throw away a damaged book it should be recycled into a new book, not thrown into landfill.

In what contexts is sustainability an issue?

Sustainability is an issue in many areas thanks to the worlds obsession with money (which I totally understand, I just wish people were a bit more thoughtful about how they go after it).

Areas I can think of where sustainability is an issue

  • CO2 emissions in the atmosphere – pollution levels in the air- air quality made unsustainable
  • Fossil Fuels – depletion of a finite resource – unsustainable
  • The destruction of the worlds trees – oxygen production – air quality made unsustainable
  • Plastic – lives forever in landfill – infiltrating the ecosystem – food source quality and landfill capacity made unsustainable
  • Textiles – requires vast natural resources to realise – capacity of the natural environment to absorb the toll made unsustainable
  • NHS – attempting to fix a society increasingly subject to large quantities of lifestyle based disease in addition to normal illness/injury – capacity to cope made unsustainable
  • Housing – the planet has too many people yet there is still relentless breeding taking place, so people build on green spaces to house the people, which kills the environment, which people then complain about, and somehow it’s always someone else’s fault – Unsustainable
  • Meat consumption -currently a hot topic – linked to toll on atmosphere and the ridiculous number of people on the planet – meat production has been made unsustainable
  • The public interest in Brexit! – endless debates over a course of years with no real decisions – interest in Brexit is rapidly becoming unsustainable 😉

How do you think sustainability might be addressed in relation to the production and consumption of textiles and other manufactured products?

I can think of a few ways in which the sustainability of textiles and manufactured products could be addressed. First, increased public awareness. As I said previously, I would class myself as reasonably well informed about matters concerning the planet, I had absolutely no idea about the toll the textile industry has on the environment. If I don’t know then there will be others that don’t either. With increased awareness will come more local efforts at recycling, more individuals donating clothes to charity shops for a second life and more awareness about choosing the right article to buy in the first place.

This leads me on to shopping choices. When people became more conscious of the need to eat less meat, they brought more vegetarian meals, when plastic became a known issue, franchises had to do away with straws. If a similar demand can be made in the area of textiles, more response will be required from the textile industry to look at sustainability. This could be something as simple as recycling more cloth and including it in their new creations as either a whole or a percentage such as Levis who now use recycled plastic to make jeans . It could even be a feature item such as a ‘jumper for life’.

H+M are one store which are making a public move towards a more sustainable approach with recycled elements in their clothing and a lot more information about their manufacturing processes on their website.

Another way to aid sustainability could be by varying the materials used to make the textiles. I found an interesting article entitled ‘The top 10 sustainability trends coming out of textile exchange’. In it it describes the notion of the circular economy and how companies are starting to move towards it. There were some interesting examples of these moves towards sustainability involving crops such as a company called ‘Orange Fibers’ which makes a silk-like fabric out of orange peel. Another named Vegea has used grape skin to make a fabric similar to leather, this initiative is being backed by H+M.

Making recycling easier for people could be another way to help sustainability. Maybe something like a recycling deposit box in-store? If. for example, I’m going to Primark for a replacement top, it’s easy enough for me to take my old broken one there at the same time and put it in a recycling bin.

The last method I can think of to aid sustainability is to relocate clothes manufacturing. If English peoples clothes were made in England the monetary costs would be higher, but the carbon footprint of each item would be a lot less. A byproduct of that would probably be that we’d not be able to afford to buy clothes…which would drive us all to the charity shops….which would cause better recycling but then unemployment within the clothing factories….oh it’s complicated!

( Study.com. (2019). Textile Industry & Sustainability | Study.com. [online] Available at: https://study.com/academy/lesson/textile-industry-sustainability.html [Accessed 10 Nov. 2019].)

Donaldson, T. (2019). The Top 7 Sustainability Trends Coming Out of Textile Exchange. [online] Sourcing Journal. Available at: https://sourcingjournal.com/topics/sustainability/top-7-sustainability-trends-coming-textile-exchange-td-74311/ [Accessed 10 Nov. 2019].