Alex Sainsbury

I decided to look at the work of Alex Sainsbury because I love the use of colour, emotions, creativity and the variety of poses in his photography. I was starting to plan the shoot of using the yellow background in the media studio and I thought looking at the work of Alex Sainsbury would be a great place to start to get inspiration. I particularly want to get ideas on how to shoot with a coloured background in a unique, stylish and intuitive way. By looking at his images I can get a feeling how he has done his lighting and think about how I am going to light my model and coloured background. I also want to get ideas for the types of clothing, posing and emotion I want in my images and Alex’s work seems to be a great place to start. Do I want serious, happy, neutral, faces and poses? These are all the things I need to think about before doing the shoot, as well as something I can experiment with on the shoot.

Alex is an up incoming photographer who has caught the attention of alternative magazines with his striking work. His work is often described as full of narrative, colourful, eye catching and beautiful. His work often brings a unique perspective to the world of fashion photography. He has worked for many of the alternative fashion magazines such as I-D, Wonderland, Dazed and Garage and has assisted many great photographers. It is evident that he loves to use bold colours in his work, but it still looks beautiful, intriguing and quirky – fresh, in an out of the box way. He mostly poses his models with a dark serious, raw and honest look to them, but still manages to appeal to the younger fashion audience. His work really stands out to me and I hope by experimenting with some of his techniques I can further develop my own photography style.

Looking at many of his images online, I loved his work and thought it was so different and had a certain style that I had not seen before. Looking through his work these words came to mind and is what I like about his work:

  • Narrative to his work
  • Creativity
  • Textured
  • Beautifully simple
  • Raw
  • Colourful
  • Models posed in serious way
  • Quirky
  • Out of the box
  • Stark


I love the two images above because they have a certain raw and honest style to the images, maybe even a documentary feel to them. I think both the images look well-lit but simplistic and stark, relying mostly on the model to catch the attention of the audience. He does this by the way the models are both starring right in to the camera which helps the audience connect with the image, without there being lots of things going on in the background – which would distract the viewer from the main purpose of the image.

For this shoot I definitely need to think of my styling, posing and the types of clothes I am going to put the model in. Am I going to make the clothes clash or let them merge into a yellow background? I will experiment posing my model in the way in which Alex has, as I think the image will then have a more honest style. By merging that style of posing and colour surge together I could really get some eye capturing images from this shoot.