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A Spotlight on Fashion Photos

July 04, 2018

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I have subscriptions to Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Allure and Marie Claire beauty and fashion magazines and, I must admit, I love looking at all the photos that are spread liberally throughout these publications – and when I say “liberally” I mean it.

Naomi Campbell started working as a model when she was just fifteen

For example, I just took a close look at a recent issue of Marie Claire. The entire magazine totals 174 pages. Of this, there are 132 pages of fashion and beauty shots on editorial and advertising pages. My opinion: these pubs are fun to whip through BUT if one wants to really read informative, in-depth articles it’s wise to look elsewhere. Some promote their products in a tasteful manner while others are otherworldly – for these I just stop, stare and say to myself, “Far out!”

IT ALL BEGAN BACK IN THE DAY

Using photos for fashion goes back 105 years – before this all artwork was in the form of illustrations that were drawn by an artist. Then fashion took a giant step 23 years later (1936) when a photographer named Martin Munkacsi decided to take his models out of the studio for location shoots.

A current and visually exciting ad from Hermes

THE CREATIVE RICHARD AVEDON

In the late 1940s and early fifties, the super-talented Avedon shot elegant black-and-white photographs that showcased the latest fashions in real-life settings. He worked for Harper’s Bazaar and the renowned art director, Alexey Brodovitch (a Russian aristocrat and émigré who revolutionized magazine design). From 1945 to 1965 Avedon was with Bazaar. Then he changed and went to Vogue where he stayed from 1966 to 1990.

In 1955, Avedon made fashion history when he staged a photo shoot at a circus and took, “Dovima with Elephants” that featured the famous model in a black Dior evening gown posed between two elephants. In November 2010 this photo sold for $1.2 million at Christie’s in Paris – a record for an Avedon photograph. CLICK HERE to view this astonishing shot.

THE CELEBRITY AND THE SUPERMODEL

The swinging sixties was the era of celebrities and a young English girl with the improbable name of “Twiggy” – a reference to her reed-thin figure. She was only a model for four years, but her looks and image drew instant recognition and fame as well as appearances on the covers of Vogue and Tatler, the world’s oldest magazine.

The hauntingly beautiful Twiggy, who was a model for a short four years

This was followed in the 80s and 90s by supermodels, namely: Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista, Cindy Crawford and Christy Turlington (who is 49, looks terrific and is still modeling while pursuing other interests). Naomi Campbell, 47 the British supermodel, is still in the news for one reason or another today. No one knows what she’ll do next.

TODAY’S STAR PHOTOGRAPHERS

There are a number of outstanding ones today but, for various reasons, I prefer to focus on Annie Leibovitz. Why? Well, I thought her recent photograph for Vanity Fair’s annual Hollywood cover that featured Tom Hanks, Reese Witherspoon, Jessica Chastain and others was absolutely sensational. I also love the fact that the magazine published a backstory on the shoot – THAT made for riveting reading. CLICK HERE to see this stunning shot.

This brings us to the year 2018 and Instagram – everyone has his or her own platform to create and publish work. Fashion photos are no longer just in the pages of glossy magazines. Everything has changed.

MAY WE SUGGEST…

Winter has finally gone, spring passed by “in the blink of an eye”, so let’s celebrate summer with new togs from ADEA. Everything we offer packs easily and is super wearable -- the perfect answer to no-hassle travel.

Shaun Nelson-Henrick



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