A look behind the lookbook

It's no secret that brand's promote unrealistic imagery of warped and edited bodies. It seems to be an eternal saga we're struggling to shake off. Moving (slowly) on from the days of digitally enhanced, alien expectations resulting in emerging Photoshop fails as seen amongst the likes of Victoria Secret and the unforgettable faux pas provided by Net-A-Porter, the industry now experiences pressure to include a true representation of the human body. All ethnic backgrounds, body forms, ages, hair colours and abilities welcome. Yet in light of Missguided tipping the balance the other way, when can you truly believe what you see? 

Taking a giant leap in the right direction the French law being introduced demands digitally edited photos come with a label much like paid for advertorials across social platforms. A transparent approach to advertisement that starts offering a connection back to reality and refuses to put those posing on the other side of the camera on a pedestal, perhaps taking action to avoid impressionable minds to obsess over unattainable and severely unhealthy goals.  

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On the flip side, and to play devil's advocate; as a brand we must compete. Our images need to be polished to rival the noise in a crowded market. We crave your attention and we need it to survive. After all, this ruse of glamour within the fashion industry is essentially what leads to conversion and sales. You wouldn't buy a twig next to a hand carved walking stick. Strange metaphor, but that's what popped in my head, so bare with me. 

And so, as creative director and Queen of my empire, I have arrived at the conclusion to show you unedited vs. edited photos of the latest lookbook for you to decipher how true our representation really is. If you follow our social feeds you may already know through behind the scenes mishaps with production and scheduling, I found the camera firmly in my hands with no prior photography knowledge. Please consider this when judging said photos.  

 

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I will also take this moment to praise the creative team I had working with me as without such local talent the shots would have been rendered useless. To my make up artist Amy Rose, who jumped in at the drop of a hat and has been the most professional and creative artist I've worked with to date. To my male model AND hair stylist Callum who continues to surprise me with his endless talents and ability to adapt on set. And to Nicole, who at last minute (and after a bit of a creepy stalking from me on Instagram) stepped in to deliver effortless prowess shot after shot. 

It is also worth noting, although I have next to no idea how to use a camera or any relevant settings, I would class myself as 'intermediate' in editing software. Using Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom to produce the final outcome. 

We raced against the sun within the church and made the best use of the space on the doorstep of the atelier. Beyond this point, hours were spent trying to edit the best out of the photos. I have not slimmed down any of the models and never will, at most I would remove a blemish on their skin. As you can see, the majority of work has been to alter colours, raise shadows and delete distractions from the scene itself. 

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Do let me know what you think in the comments and if this has been a positive post to share from my perspective of the brand. Is it something you think should be offered more in the industry? Does it affect your decision when choosing where to shop? 

 


 

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Alexandra Jane WallComment