Learning to be a fashion photographer

Discussion in 'Photography' started by b.s, Dec 19, 2008.

  1. b.s

    b.s Guest

    My history in fashion photography
    I began my 30-year career by getting fired as a photo assistant after
    two years of brewing tea, sweeping the studio floors and fetching
    equipment for several studio photographers. I decided to go solo and
    set up my own photo studio, specializing in shooting models’
    portfolios, portraits and the occasional fashion shoot.

    I was inspired by the photographers from the ‘30s to the ‘60s,
    including Cecil Beaton, Norman Parkinson, David Baily, Barry Lategan,
    John F French, Horst P Horst, William Klein, Irving Penn, Richard
    Avendon, George Hoyningen-Huene, and many more.

    My first big break in fashion photography came while setting up a test
    shoot with a model, I arranged to borrow some Fifties’ style gowns
    from a top fashion designer that sold her clothes through exclusive
    stores such as Harrods in London. This test shoot became a commission,
    and the pictures that I produced were published in Avante Guard, one
    of the UKs leading fashion magazines, at the time.

    I switched to shooting just fashion and set off to London in the early
    Eighties. Confident and adventurous, I was on the ladder to
    establishing myself as a freelance fashion shooter. The next few years
    were spent developing my own style and reputation, test shoots with
    models and endless appointments with fashion editors, art directors,
    designers and potential clients.

    I mailed samples of my work to the couture and bridal wear designers,
    and I was picked up by Catherine Raynor - a leading UK bridal wear
    couture designer who had previously worked with some of the world’s
    most prestigious photographers including Norman Parkinson, Terrance
    Donavan and John Swanell. Raynor commissioned me to shoot her next
    collection. Her status within the bridal wear industry, and the
    success of the images that I had produced for her, created a chain
    reaction with a queue of top bridal wear and couture designers
    clambering at my studio door to shoot their collections.

    The next major step came with a commission from a leading UK bridal
    wear consumer magazine to shoot two editorial stories for them on
    location in Tobago. This led to many years of shooting high fashion
    for some of the top designers, and manufacturers of couture and bridal
    wear., including Catherine Raynor, Margaret Lee Lyn Ashworth, Eleni
    Costi plus many other top names in couture and designer bridal wear.

    Inspired by some of my classic fashion images, art directors from top
    London design consultancies asked me to present my portfolio to them,
    with the view to shooting an image brochure for a leading lingerie
    company in the UK. This began a long list of lingerie and hosiery
    clients commissioning me to shoot their collections including,
    Charnos, Lapel, Silhuette, MissKini, Panache, etc etc

    I shot many image brochures and catalogues, with fashion shoots in
    some of the some of world most beautiful and exotic locations from
    Alaska to Kenya. Shooting catalogues on location, with all of its
    challenges, taught me to shoot fast with available light. I was
    commissioned to arrange the complete production for bi-annual fashion
    shoots, including the sourcing of the production teams, location
    managers, catering, location transport, even helicopters and arctic
    supply vessels.

    In the late 90s I began shooting in digital. There are so many
    benefits, its speed of production for press and post-production
    regarding retouching, etc, which is now in my own hands, ensuring my
    images get reproduced how I envisage them to be.

    My work can be seen at

    My web album

    My master classes

    My Online Fashion Photography Course
    b.s, Dec 19, 2008
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  2. b.s


    Feb 12, 2009
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