Suburban Occult, Elinchrom, and
David and I recently celebrated the 1 year anniversary of The Fashion Photography Blog! We both want to extend a very warm thank you to all of our readers and subscribers!! I think we’re both a little more than suprised that the blog has done as well as it has in such a short time and continues to grow and gain popularity. But it’s you, the reader, that has made this possible and we’re very grateful to all of you who have been so loyal and enthusiastic towards this blog. We have more things planned for the blog in the coming year including a store where I’ll list books and DVD’s that I recommend and tutorials we offer, plus the seminars that we’re planning on doing every other month in 2010! We’re looking forward to an exciting year ahead of us, so stay tuned!
One of my assistants, Matt Stone, approached me during the summer about collaborating with him on a fashion editorial video he wanted to shoot. I was intrigued with his idea! I figured he and I could sandwich together my resources for talent with his team and video gear to produce an interesting short video. Matt’s concept, “The Suburban Occult” was the story of 5 young adults getting together to celebrate one of their birthdays’ and they end up getting a little in over their heads when they start experiementing with the Occult. His idea was to take an editorial idea and bring it to life by capturing motion. He said, “Recently, new tools have become available to still photographers allowing us to make high quality video with the same camera we use to shoot stills. To me, seeing a movie instead of a still makes the experience more palpable. In traditional editorial story telling there is a beginning middle and end which is also similar to the structure of film. However, unlike film, fashion editorial’s goal is to sell clothing and lifestyle and does not approach the traditional themes of film. In this way I wanted to stay true to the mood of fashion editorial by creating a film that captures an experience but also shows off some beautiful clothing.” Matt has always been inspired by the classic films of John Hughes, a film director that basically helped my generation through our late teen-aged anst! . But Matt wanted to take Hughes’ style and use modern tools. Matt shot this video on a digital format that he believes gives a certain sharpness and realness to the image so he used the Canon 5D and traditional film lighting. I shot the stills as if it were an editorial and Matt shot the video. It was a lot of fun and it’s something I’d like to do more of in the future. I’ve always enjoyed collaborating with other artists. Photography is a definitely a “one-man hobby” and sometimes it can be such a rush to work with other artists on a specific project.
Watch The Video
I did the casting for the models and I also brought together the team of artists. We worked with 5 models: Eugenia and Denise who are represented by Photogenics. Rachele hailed from I Models here in LA. Our male models were Ilia and Nils, both from Ford Models LA. Our black magic/rock and roll hair stylist Steve David came out to do hair. That was the first time I worked with Steve and I think it’s fair to say that a friendship was formed that day and I’ve been working with him ever since. It’s funny how that happens, you work with so many different talented people but you end up clicking with someone and they become a part of your life. I mean, not only is he just a cool guy, he is so passionate about hair and that really impresses me. Make up was done by Burke Daniels who did an awesome job and Robyn Goldberg came in to lend her styling wizardry to the shoot! Matt Stone has entered his video in a contest on the Daily Film website. You should all go vote for his video! He put a ton of work into it and I think he deserves some recognition. Matt’s a great guy. I interviewed him back in March when I was looking for an intern and was immediately taken with how talented he is along with his cool demeanor. He’s one of those rare “real people” out here in LA plus he has a big huge future ahead of him. And I’m really glad we had the chance to collaborate on this. It was a blast!
To wrap it up here, I’m in heavy shooting mode, as I mentioned and I will have a lot of images and tech info to post coming up here soon. I’ve been testing with different light modifiers and I’m completely in love with Elinchrome’s Octa. What a sexy/crazy light modifier. Big and luscious, that light just makes me swoon. (No, I’m not sponsored by Elinchrome and I’m sure if they read that description they’ll run in the opposite direction from me…lol) December is heavily scheduled out with location shoots. The weather here in Southern Caliornia is fantastic! This is my favorite time of the year in this city. A little cooler, better air, the light hangs lower on the horizon and the tourists have gone home, for the most part. As I’m writing this the wind is knocking against the windows and the sun is coming up over the hills and it’s pretty magical. I’m going to take advantage of the weather and start shooting outdoors again. That’s one great thing about living in this part of the world: we have the desert, the mountains and the beach within a few hours of our fingertips. In other words, there is just no damn excuse why I’m not out there utilizing it!
I’ll leave you with this gem: Steven Meisel, Fashion Photography’s Iconic Master, has a new book out. “Three Hundred and Seventeen & Counting” showcases Meisel’s covers for Italian Vogue from 1988 through 2009. This compilation of photographs is hands-down phenomenal. Meisel is a genius! His eye for casting the right talent for the story he’s working on to mixing fashion editorial with cultural reference, is without parallel. You guys should at the very least check out his book, but honestly it should be part of your collection of photography books! If you read the “about the book” section you will see that Steven Meisel has created every cover and lead editorial story for Italian Vogue for the past two decades. There is definitely something to be said for that strength of a commitment, for both Meisel and Italian Vogue!