5.2.10

"The whole streetstyle thing these days is like a job, it's all planned and thought up in advance..."

"....it's not as though you just 'happen' to run into one another."

Anna Dello Russo, telling us something that isn't exactly a surprise: fashion editors- and probably other streestyle photog favourites too- don't exactly throw on whatever's on the nearest shelf of their wardrobes and walk blithely out of their houses/hotels (whichever is applicable to Fashion Week attendees).

It's not as if this hasn't been discussed before- many of the Sartorialist's commenters have been grousing for years that he primarily shoots people who work in fashion and therefore, have more access to it. And I've never been under the illusion that streetsyle photography is purely 100% spontaneously born at the moment when well-dressed people run into a person on the street holding a DSLR camera.
In fact, it's no secret that even the fabled streestyle shots of Tokyo aren't a chronicle of the outfits of well-dressed ordinary (i.e. non-fashion) people- I can't post this without linking to this post by Néojaponisme which talks about just how many of the people we see in FRUiTS etc* are, in fact, fashion professionals in one capacity or other. Not that there's anything wrong with that- it's probably only natural that people whose professional lives are lived in the fashion industry will keep a sharp eye on the way they dress.
Ultimately, it's not as if I have a beef with the planned-ness of streestyle, besides the fact that - unlike most fashion magazines- it presents itself, however inadvertently, as something born of a single moment and the snap decision before it to put on whatever walked out the door on your body. I know perfectly well that's not always the case, and it's good for fashion eds and stylists to show off their skills on themselves and get the exposure. But when up to six months of planning and calculation for camera-friendliness goes into the making of whatever ends up on a streestyle homepage, the magnitude of it all leaves me just a tiny bit more disillusioned even if I do appreciate her honesty in coming out and saying it. 

photograph by Feri Lucas from guardian.co.uk

9 comments:

WendyB said...

I gave up on the Sartorialist long ago for the concentration on fashion people. Editors and off-duty models might be interesting to me once in a while but a concentration on them is boring. Of course they're going to have all the latest looks. So what?

Blue Floppy Hat said...

WendyB: You've held that position for a long time...and I kind of agree with it. And most of the editors are practically model-like themselves, too. But I still love the photographs.

Make Do Style said...

Look it is no coincidence that street style photography takes place in same places whether NYC or London or Paris and therefore industry peeps figure heavily or people trying very hard!

I also gave up on the Sartorialist in 2007/8 got really bored with his canon shots - just predictable and still are. I wish they were a true documentary of style but they aren't however it is a valid reportage of fashion and the fashion industry.

Blue Floppy Hat said...

Make Do Style: What you say is true- the photographers, in whichever city they might happen to be, do tend to take most of their shots in certain areas. It's not a surprise that people/types of people who hang around those places are the ones who get featured on the blog!
I've not given up on the Sartorialist though, even if I stopped seeing streetstyle blogs as 'regular person' showcases long ago (though it's great when they do actually catch a random person on the street in something inspirational). And I guess there is a bit of a feeling that streetstyle as a concept has been co-opted by the industry to showcase its insiders better (inspirational insiders, but insiders nonetheless).

divine bunny said...

i understand what youre saying. planning to the very last tip is not understated its over stated.

divine

Blue Floppy Hat said...

To be honest, I don't particularly value 'understatedness' in dress though it can look great. And the eds aren't to blame for turning it into this choreographed affair, it's just that, like ADR says, that takes all the spontaneity out of it.

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Sister Wolf said...

I hate all StreetStyle blogs. Hate. Why would I want to look at smug trendy people with too much money? It's bad enough living in L.A. Plus, I guess I don't have enough of a shoe fetish to get off on those photos.

Blue Floppy Hat said...

Sister- (I'm honoured you chose to comment!) I don't mind the smug trendy people, they look shitloads better than the smug rich wannabes in my neck of the Third World. It's nice to have other people to look at.

I'm no shoe fetishist either- too fond of high-top sneakers for that, and you hardly ever see those on American/European streestyle girls.

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