Sunday, 10 November 2013

M&S Advert

Marks & Spencers christmas advert for 2013 is all about using fairytale stories to advertise their products.

Firstly we see the model go down the rabbit hole and land at the mad hatters tea party where she has the choice to pick any product she wants ranging from accessories to products for the home and food, then she gets chased by two human playing cards, followed by little red riding hood where she comes across a gingerbread house. From then she is whisked away on a magic flying carpet which is representing the fairytale 'Aladdin' which we see lingerie advertised, followed by 'The Wizard of OZ' where she's showing off a white party dress and a pair of red heels, the model then rings a doorbell where a witch answers and says 'I love the shoes', red shoes are then tapped together where the advert comes to an end. 

This advert has been very well thought out and planned to make it magical to entice people into buying there products and popping into there stores this christmas. I think the advert works very well together, the products have been shown well. Its a feel good advert that takes you back to childhood memories, it almost makes you feel young again and puts a smile on the viewers face which in turn will make the viewer remember the advert and will be more likely to visit their store. 

I'm interested in the detailing and story this advert tells going from one fairytale to another in a swift combination that works well. This advert follows on nicely from researching Tim Walker's fairytale photography where attention to detail and story telling is key. What I love about this advert is its inspiring and appealing element with the fairytale concept, it takes you back to good memories and thats the effect I want my own magazine to have one thats inspiring and interesting to look at and something thats flows and tells a story. Elements from this advert can be taken to help me when it comes to building up a scene and story for my photo shoots, as its inspiring and has a strong concept behind it that works. Although my concept isn't focused on fairytales the use of detail and story telling within this advert and previous works from photographers I have been researching are along the lines of the style of images I hope to create within my own story telling of various themes, i.e. Hostility and Friendliness, Serene and Chaos, in order to create stories from these opposite words this advert will help me focus on stylising ideas for shoots.   


Thursday, 7 November 2013

Vogue Fairytale Shoots

Tim Walker also worked with Eugenio Recuenco for Vogue to create Vogue's fairytale shoots as the scenes are very stylised and have this fairytale theme running throughout which Tim is very brilliant at portraying. I will be looking at his work as inspiration for styling my own shoots as his use of props and location.

These series of shoots have all been delicately put together with every little detail being precise, this is what I love about his work the attention to detail is impeccable everything is placed and set out precisely which results in these seamlessly beautiful images. Each image is telling a story through visual communication with in dept thought into location, setting, outfits, hair and make-up to portray these fairytales in a much more showcase way picking out the underlaying sexuality or morbid atmosphere found in some of these childhood stories. 

Within my own work I wish to follow in his foot steps in relation to the amount of detailing goes into my shoots with the use of props etc. What I like about the images as well is they have so much depth running through them, the viewer is almost transported to there childhood memories which undoubtably makes you smile. This is the type of effect I want my own magazine to have on viewers is to feel inspired by the images and get a sense of a story behind each photograph and almost start unravelling the images to find out the meaning behind them. All of these images are sharp and crisp with every detail being captured.

Below are a few of Vogue's fairytale shoots...

'Alice and Wonderland' 


'Hansel and Grettal' 

'Princess and the pea'

'Snow White'

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Tim Walker

After finding the work of Luke Woodford it reminding me of Tim Walker and his work because of the use of old buildings, so I did a bit of research. 
Tim Walker is a British fashion photographer who's photographs have entranced the readers of Vogue, month after month, for over a decade. Extravagant staging and romantic motifs characterise his unmistakable style. 

Tim Walker's work is visually exciting, influential and extravagant in scale his ambition in photographs are instantly recognisable for their eye-opening originality, Walker's work dazzles with life, colour and humour. 

He claims the camera...
 "is simply a box put between you and what you want to capture."

Everything in his pictures are specially constructed with installations, extraordinary props and models on show. His work is underpinned by a magical and eccentric charm he has the ability to capture the imagination in a single image, their imaginary, fantastic and bazaar. 

Within my own practice I will be exploring the use of props and story telling throughout my images, to do this a lot of preparation, organisation and sourcing will be required, with story board ideas for shoots being produced.
I aim for my images to be interesting and inspiration for the viewer which is my magazine's aim, to inspire and excite. 

Below are a few of his most famous pieces, you can see the similarities between Luke's work and Tim's work with the run down buildings and the staging each of them explore with their photo shoots...

'Lily and the Spiral Staircase'

Above is an image called 'Lily and the Spiral Staircase' which was taken in Italy in 2005.

This image is one of my personal favourites, Lily Cole is posing on a spiral staircase wearing an unusually long, blue, flowing dress that has been draped over the side of the staircase creating this flow of blue fabric, almost like a river you follow up to show off every possible detail of the dress.

Walker's has used a lot of natural light in his work as he has done within this image which I think works extremely well with the tall windows, this shows off the patterns on the spiral staircase. 
This image was created as being a commercial advertisement so the main focus is showing off the dress, it shows visual appeal and desire of wanting this product.

I think its a beautiful image and again is almost fairytale-like, it reminds me of 'Rupunzel' with the long train of fabric acting like Rupunzels long blonde hair who is high up in a tower, but here she is high up on a staircase.

'Lily Cole and the Giant Watering Can'

Above is and image called 'Lily cole and the Giant Watering Can' which was taken in northumberland, England in 2004. 

The image shows Lily Cole posing in an ivory dress that covers her from head to toe which suggests a child-like innocents which I think adds to the overall purity of this image. She is holding a lamp whilst stood next to a giant watering can which is an object that is normally outside along with the giant butterflies, with him bringing them into an inside environment creates a contrast between what's expected and the parallel reality that has been created, which he brings in all of his work.

The lighting in this image is created by four lamps around the room that give of a warm glow, one of which is held by the model to light her body. The atmosphere of this image is very childhood-like and dream-like, the use of oversized objects reminds me of 'Alice in Wonderland' as it has that similar child-like dream feel and look within this fairytale. 

Overall I feel this image shows a soft representation of fairytale fantasy were he creates thought provoking images that let us see into Walker's imagination. 

"His Photographs remind us of our own capability to dream."

Luke Woodford

Luke Woodford is an internationally published London and Brighton based photographer, specialising in fashion, wedding and portrait photography. 

Woodford's 'abandoned fashion' series is described below as...

"...tantalises the viewer by it's concept, where light and darkness, life and death curiously intertwine to create a new, unworldly vision of what might have been. In his shoots he uses abandoned houses, empty staircases and dilapidated walls which all bear the seal of decay, yet they  are still imbued with the memories of people who use to dwell there, as if surmising their unseen presents. The ghostly charm of uninhabited spaces creates a dramatic contrast to a melancholic beauty of the youg models, wearing inspiring pieces from talented upcoming designers."

I absolutely love his series of photographs and the whole concept behind his work, as shown below...

The above image shows four models all dressed in the same wedding dress who have been placed in unusual poses in this run-down room where wall paper is peeling of the walls, the floor is covered in dust, the room is empty and as clearly been abandoned for some time. 

The contrast between the beautiful haute couture dresses and the derelict building shows an appreciation resulting in beautiful images with a strong and empowering aura. When I stop and think about this image more closely its suggesting that these models are part of the building the way they have been placed, almost as if their slowing eroding with this building, like there's no escape from inside these walls.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Bela Borsodi

Bela Borsodi is an Australian photographer, his style of work is combining aspects of fine art, graphic design, craft, and psychology, which offers surreal imagery that makes clothing and accessories 3-dimensional. Borsodi says...

"I love making things and putting things in an unusual context incorporating various languages coming form art and graphic design - eroticism is also a fascination of me that I love exploring."

Below is a series of photographs from his 'heart of stone' collection that featured in issue 11 of Tatler magazine. 

I absolutely love these photographs, the composition of light and dark, shadows and darkness is really inspiring as well as the positions and poses of the models, they portray passion and dominance.   

These jewellery editorials use a couple getting intimate to showcase the accessories, all of the images show dominance of the man but more so of the women's dominance over him which I think is something very powerful. This style of advertising can be very effective as its suggestive so if you wear this jewellery you will have a man that is as passionate as what's being showcased to you. 

The lighting within these images is my main focus, I like the shadows of darkness that blocks off parts of the body especially the mans which draws your eyes more towards the woman who is wearing the jewellery, you never see the male models face only parts of his body which indicates he is not the focus of this image but the woman is.

To achieve this style myself within my practice the shoot would have to take place in a studio in order to have total darkness and use of light boxes to give this full effect as effective as possible, this would give me that light on the models and the shadows I like so much. I will be experimenting with contrasts between light and dark within my own images, the simplicity of these images is one I admire even though they are simplistic they manage to give of an intense portrayal.

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Lillian Bassman

Photographer Lillian Bassman was both director and photographer for Bazaar between the 40's and 50's and is said to have inspired John Galliano within his own work. Her transcendent photography invigorated fashion with her high contrasts between light and dark, the graininess of the finished photographs, the geometric placement and camera angles of subjects is what made her fashion photography different to others. 

I like the distorted and blurriness of these photographs its a possible technique I may try when experimenting but I think my style is more crisp and sharp photography, but I thought these were very interesting and different to look at.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Eccentric Compositions

I really like these two photographs the details and movements captured I think are beautiful with the eccentric compositions with the way the photos have been taken, makes them look a little strange and unfamiliar which is what I like about these images, there different. 
Composition is something I will be exploring later on along side camera positions and poses to capture the emotions of the words I will be trying to portray through photography, these images look like they have been done in a studio.

Photography by Nick Knight 


Build - Destroy
Bound - Unbound
Before - After
Hot - Cold
Capture - Free
Cheerful - Discouraged
Dusk - Dawn
Gentle - Rough
Good - Bad - Evil
Happy - Sad
Hate - Love
Join - Separate
Laugh - Cry
Them - Us

All of these words are opposites to one another, these are examples of the types of words I will be using to create and develop my magazine. Each photo shoot will be based on two words that oppose to each other, this will be the base for my story telling throughout the magazine.

Pop of colour

After looking at Sass & Bides collection and their use of black and white with a pop of colour got me thinking about maybe having a hint of colour running through the magazine where appropriate. I found some photographs below that really enhance and bring to life the idea I have about adding a hint of colour to a pure black and white magazine, only to use where necessary to make the photographs stand out and be as effective as they can be.
Its an idea that I will explore to see whether or not this would be a good way to go with my magazine, as a fully black and white magazine maybe a bit much so it may need that hint of colour.

The use of the colour red in these photographs is very effective as red is a very diverse colour and can stand for many different emotions and feelings such as: passion, love, beauty and even death.   

Sass & Bide

Sass & Bide at London Fashion Week with their ss/14 collection.
I always love Sass & Bide's collections they use a lot of black and white and look very futuristic, with this collection I especially like that they have continued to use black and white but have added a pop of colour in this case yellow. The idea to use only monochrome outfits within my photo shoots could be an idea, this may enhance the quality of composition between the black and white. It is something I will explore later on and see if using only monochrome outfits will be beneficial to the overall look of the photographs or whether it will flatten and make the images less authentic.  

Inspiring Words

These are a handful of words I have picked out as inspirational words for the overall concept of my magazine, the idea of using opposite words in order to create photo shoots that inspire viewers and put across a story. Because I will be producing a black and white publication my initial idea was to relate words such as negative and positive space, shadow and reflection, light and dark, so from this my concept has adapted into being a photography based magazine which tells stories through photo shoots and the use of these opposite words. 

Fashion Advertisements

Lara Stone by Calvin Klein

This advertisement by Calvin Klein uses both lightening and dominance to capture audiences attention to their brand. The model is captured half clothed posing in a sensual way but looking vulnerable with a man standing almost over her as we can see from the shadow captured on the right hand side of her. It brings real controversy in the way they have stylised this photograph as it sexualises woman and makes them look weak due to the shadow of a man standing over her showing dominance. The way this image has been lit and shadows created really inspire me within my own work.

Although this image can be seen as not being a positive images of women the idea behind the shoot relates to some of the opposite words I will be exploring such as: vulnerable, dominance and weakness. Looking at fashion advertisements has been a good place to start with gathering ideas for photo shoots and concepts, seeing whats been done, what works and what doesn't work. 

Below are two Dolce & Gabbana advertisements that relate to this idea of woman being seen as sexualised and weak...

With these images I am focusing more on the way the photographs have been set up and stylised to capture these words that I will be exploring within my own work, the way these images have been constructed is my interest.

Horst P. Horst

Horst is another fashion photographer that worked specifically with black and white photography. He is best known for one of the great iconic photographs of the twentieth century 'The mainbocher corset', with its erotically charged mystery. Horst's work frequently reflects his interest in surrealism and his idea of the Greek ideal of physical beauty.  

I really like how in a lot of his photographs he only shoots half the body or part of the body, it creates a mystery and the opportunity for the viewer to use there imagination. I love this idea of creating photographs that create mystery and capture surrealism. This arrangement to use only parts of the body may be relevant within my work when thinking about concept and camera positioning. 

Helmut Newton

I started looking at photographers that specifically used black and white photography to capture their photographs, this is when I remembered the famous Helmut Newton know for his prolific, provocative and erotically-charged black and white photos. 
Newton transformed fashion photography in the way he documented lifestyle on pages of glossy magazines. Newton says...  

"His erotic and dreamlike images were like a peep through a keyhole, spied moments of a heightened reality."

The way he sets his scenes in his photographs are very stylised with a hint of fetish subtext underlying within the photographs. He explores the sexuality of woman through his provocative scenes where dominance is a key factor. 
This idea of showing woman as weak and vulnerable is an aspect that will play a roll within my photo shoots when exploring words of opposites. 

Anton Surkov

Through my first initial researching into black and white photography I came across this Ukrainian photographer that produces cutting edge fantastic photographs of motion using the human body. 


The models are seen mid-motion in a completely captivating light, the lines of the young models bodies carry across intense emotions through the clouds of powder that is exploding around them. each photograph captures the extreme lighting patterns that reveal the details of each powerful body as it is consumed by the bursts of chalky dust, the photographs also jump of the screen at you.

I love the detailing and the lighting these photographs have and the fact that they have been shot in black and white gives a real sense of rawness and emotion between these two people, the idea of motion and capturing movement is one I would be excited to explore and experiment with as an idea for a possible photo shoot within my magazine.