Evaluation for Fashion

For The project of fashion we were asked to research in depth four magazines all with different target audiences and research how they differ? We then had to look at two different fashion stylists and think about what attracted you to the stylists etc.  For the next part of the assignment we had to take four images one taken on location, one taken in an interior area and then two images in the studio. For the two studio images, one needed to be with a theme of colour and one needed to be with the theme of high key, mid key or low key. All four images would need to be full length and in the style of spring/summer. After completing all the research and experimental work for this assignment, I have selected my four final images which I think are the perfect images that represent spring/summer in an experimental and unique way in both in a studio and on location.

This project has been my favourite assignment of this year as it given me the opportunity to experiment with the idea of fashion photography, which is my favourite genre and also try different techniques from photographers I have researched throughout this project such as David Bailey and Guy Bourdin. I think It was a great idea to look at these two photographers because they both have very different styles which means I will be able to experiment using two different techniques and bring it into my own work. Another reason I picked these photographers was because they have both done a mixture of studio and on location work which means whilst doing this project I can look back at their work and see how it can improve my own images.

One of my favourite parts to this project was the fashion week I really enjoyed getting to know what a fashion shoot environment is like as well as an insight into what fashion photography is like. Though my group did have many problems thought the experience. However in the end we did work well as a team and I learnt a lot from the experience.

When I was first thinking of the type of images I wanted to take for the four images I had no idea on the location I should use or what type of lighting, clothing, makeup, hair and environment I could use. So to begin with I made mood boards for each of the four images as well as the type of posing and makeup I would want to try. After doing some extensive research into all of the areas, my ideas started to form. Such as in the studio I finally decided to use gel lighting for the colour shoot and use high key lighting for the lighting shoot, I thought this would be a good idea because I have always wanted to experiment with gel lighting. As well as really getting to know and experiment with the lighting of high key.

For the location images, forming my ideas took more time to begin I thought, I had no idea on the outside and inside location I wanted to use I knew I really wanted to experiment and try new techniques. In the end I decided that for my on location shoot I wanted to do a country feel to the images maybe have the model sitting in a field or sitting on a fence, but as that idea grew I wanted to try something completely outside the box and that was to not only have a model in the image but also have a horse, I knew straight away this would be a difficult idea as I had never used horses in my images before and that for these images I would not only have to think of the positioning of my model but the horse as well, Yet I had fixated on the idea and I knew I had to try it. Many people told me it was a bad idea as many things could go wrong for example the model getting hurt or the equipment being damaged but I did my research and talked to my friend who’s horse I would be using about if the horse was easily spooked or not and she advised me no and that we would just have to make sure the horse was comfortable before starting the shoot. After the plan for the location shoot was sorted I Then I needed to think about the interior shoot which I think was the hardest to come up with the idea of where I would be shooting I thought of ideas such as a coffee shop, car park, house and shop but none seemed to stick out to me. So again the research really helped and I found that what I thought were the best images taken for the interior shoot was taken inside a house with the model sitting or standing by a wall or sitting on a bed I really like the idea of  the model standing by an interesting and detailed wall and that by using a house there would be many places to try different positioning and poses.

When all four ideas had been formed it was then time to start shooting I think that all the shoots went really well and I enjoyed experimenting and trying new techniques I had never done before. All four shoots were very different experiences which I really enjoyed because I got to learn many different techniques and try lots of different models and see how different models act. These experiences I would not have learnt so much from If I had only had to take four images on location because by taking 4 different images in different environments I got to learn new skills that I could then transfer into the other shoots. One thing that I found frustrating about this assignment was that we could only take full length images as I believe my style is about trying to find peculiar positioning and angles by angling the camera so part of the head is cut of etc, But on the other hand I do understand why these constraints were there as it enabled me to learn how to light full length images in different locations and not just using lighting and positioning within my comfort zone.

Within every shoot there will always be images that don’t work this could be because they are under exposed, over exposed, angle of the camera, positioning of the model, makeup, lighting, clothing and the weather. You always have to be ready for something to go wrong and to maybe change your plan on the day no matter how prepared you are there will always be something to go wrong. Here are some examples from my four shoots when something went wrong.

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The reason why this images did not turn out right for the on location images is that the image is blurry , I don’t think the setting works with having the house, caravan and the menage in the image and I also don’t think the image look like a fashion image.

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One image I took during the interior shoot that did not work was the one above this is because the exposure on the model is not right, you can’t see the full length of the image which the images need to be for this assignment and I also don’t like the area that the model is sitting in and around.

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The reason in which this image does not work is because I think the colours of the gels are not dark enough and they also don’t seem to be merging together very well. I also think that I didn’t get the right exposure on the model.

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Though the lighting I think looks really good in this image, The image would need to be cropped a little bit on the right side. I also don’t like the clothing the model is wearing and I am not sure about the posing, but not all posing will be perfect.

Though there will be images that go wrong throughout the shoot you carry on experimenting with different ideas you will always get a variety of images that do work or don’t. Sometimes it might be something you thought would not work but after having a go you find out it does. One image I really like out of all four shoots I did happens to also be one of my final images. The image was taken in the studio with gel lighting I really thing that the positioning of the model is very different to anything I have done before and I think the two gel colours of purple and blue work well with the clothing on the model as well as with the environment around it.

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For my final four images I am really happy with the way they have all turned out and I think I spent a long time planning my ideas before taking many images for each of the four shoots. It took me a long time to decide on which four images I was going to take as I got over whelmed by the amount of images I took for each of the shoot and had to choose from, so I asked Gem to help me narrow down and help pick my final images for the on location and Interior shoot. These two shoots I did back home in Northamptonshire at my friend’s house, but I made sure to focus on one shoot for the first day and then next day do the other. The first shoot I did was the interior shoot I got my three models and told them what I wanted them to wear and what makeup to use as I went around the house finding the best places to photograph and started to set up my lighting. Out of all the images I took that day the images I like best was the one of my model standing by the wall and behind you can see the kitchen, however when talking to Gem she advised me that though the images were really good you were being distracted by the kitchen and not spending your time looking at the model and the clothing she was wearing and this was meant to be a fashion shoot. So we found an image that was by the wall but you could not see into the kitchen.

The next day for the on location shoot we tested the horse with the lighting and he seemed fine with it so after getting the models ready and setting up the lighting we began the shoot. For this shoot I tried many different outfits, models and positioning of both the horse and the model but when I looked back at the images the images I liked best was the ones of the girl in the red ball gown standing or sitting on the horse. Yet whilst talking to Gem she advised me that she really liked the images but she thought the red dress did not suit the day time and would look better if I took the images in the dark. We then began to look through all the images to try and find some better ones and she really like the ones of the girl in the purple and black ball gown as the dress suited the day time more than the other. However The model and the dress had already been used in the interior shoot and for this assignment you cannot have the same model in any of the shoots this meant we had to look at the contact sheets again and in the end find one of the girl in the red dress that works the best and the image we chose I really like.

Moving on to the studio shoots my first shoot was the gel lighting, This was my favourite shoot out of all four fashion shoots I did for this assignment I felt that I experimented well with lots of different clothing and coloured gels and the model happened to be really good and each time I took a picture she moved into a different pose. Luckily nothing seemed to go wrong with this shoot and I am really happy with all the images I took as well as my final image.

My final shoot was the high key lighting this shoot and this did not go to plan as my model canceled on the day of the shoot, this panicked me a bit but after calming down I started to message people to see who could model for me. One person who got back to me was Amelia who happens to be in my class. This worried me a little as I knew the lectures do not like us using each other in our shoots so I thought if I asked the model from my gel light shoot to come a bit later as well I could do some high key shoots with Amelia on her own and ones of both model together and ones of the other model alone as well. This I thought would show that I have experimented and thought about not taking the easy way out and try and find two people. One thing I did find hard during this shoot was when they were modelling at the same time this was a lot harder than I thought and getting the positioning of both models right at the same time was hard.

I learnt a lot form each of the shoots and I am proud that I experiment and tried things that were out of my comfort zone and I am very happy with all four of my final images

Whilst post producing these images I wanted them to look as natural as possible and not over produced. I really wanted the images to show the truth and my intention was not to use too much Photoshop, however sometimes to make an images reach its full potential you have to do a bit more photoshop than first thought. For editing my gel lighting image I just did the basics such as adjusted the brightness, contrast, clarity and a bit of saturation I then used the clone and healing brush tool to get rid of any blemishes and to get rid of any dirt on the background. For the high key image I did the same but as well I got rid of some shadow around both of the models to help make the image stand out but to also make the image look more high key. For the last two images I did the basics such as adjusted the brightness, contrast, clarity and a bit of saturation I then used the clone and healing brush tool to get rid of any blemishes like I did for the first two. But for the interior shoot there was a book case in the image so I had to use the masking tool etc to get rid of the book case and make it look like it was never in the image. Finally for the on location image I did the same as the others but then masked the background to de-saturate the back ground to make the model and the horse stand out more and I also got rid of the horses reins which was going across the right side of the image by using the clone tool. I really hope by doing these post productions it has made the images look better and that I have not over produced on any of the images

If I was going to do this project again I would probably spend more time researching photographers, magazines and stylists to make sure I fully understand the industry of fashion. I would also spend more time looking at the clothes I put the models in to make sure they fit the theme of spring/summer in its fullest.

I am really happy this project was my last assignment as it meant I could spend more time focusing on the idea of fashion photography as it’s my favourite area in photography and I wanted to put all my focus and effort into doing this assignment It took me out of my comfort zone and got me to experiment with different ideas and techniques. It also gave me the chance to try a particular style of photography for the first time and really learn about what is fashion photography and this is the area I want to go into and explore further!

Overall I think I have fully met the assignment brief, completed everything the assignment was asking for and enjoyed challenging my own thought process and experimenting with different techniques that are out of my comfort zone.

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