Sunday, 27 December 2009

Alice in the attic

Oh the joys of feeling poorly. I have a sore throat today and am gradually losing my voice- but at least I managed to fit in a shoot before I came down with it.
These photos were taken last night, and were quite impromptu. It's what I had been wearing all day, just with the addition of an extra shirt.

We've recently had most of the upper part of our house redecorated. In fact, we've lived here for most of my life (since I was six months old) so from time to time over the years, bits of the house get changed. A rearrange here, some redecoration there, a bit added on. These images were taken at the top of the stairs in the loft, which doubles up as a bedroom and study, and which is shockingly tidy at the moment! Our house quite literally attracts junk like a magnet, so to have it this organised is amazing...

The blue floral skirt is a one made through a collaboration between me and my mum. The vintage fabric was found in a charity shop, hidden under a pile of curtains. It already had a hem, which suggests that it was originally another garment (there are some unpicking lines too). So it's nice to know it has been remade. Actually, this is quite a DIY outfit. The t-shirt is one that I customised a while ago by taking in the top so it had a tighter fit and then hand sewing the vintage lace on around the neckline. It's now one of my favourites. The blue men's silk shirt is one I picked up at at a clothes swap and the fifties satin shrug used to be my mum's. (See my 'pink silk at dusk' post for more details on it.)
The black lace up shoes were a christmas present, (my mum knows me well!) and the white socks were another gift. The necklace is a vintage one that used to be my great-grandma's, while the buckle bracelet is one I bought at a local antique and vintage stall. (I've often mentioned the wonderful 'Rosie's stall' as a source for accessories and other lovely pieces.) The blue carpet bag used to be filled with my maternal great-grandma's sewing materials and the silk scarf (as a bow) is from a charity shop.

As mentioned, I'm stuck in bed at the moment slowly coughing my voice away. And you can probably tell from my close up that I was already coming down with something here. But I have a rule that I never edit or retouch the photos I put on my blog. They are purely me, natural skin and all! I also only ever wear lip and eye make-up, meaning that I don't own any foundation or anything that I could have used to cover up the shadows under my eyes.

So this leads on to a small debate. (I have another one too, but I'm saving that for the next post.)
Do you prefer photographers who concentrate more on the original composition and lighting or do you appreciate how modern technology can enhance a photo?
I personally like to keep my photos un-edited and admire traditional methods, much like my preference towards fashion. I love looking at how a photo, or a dress is planned, crafted and put together. But having said that, I went to the Rankin exhibition in London a few months ago and was so impressed with his photography. He is someone who is renowned for his retouching and editing his work, and this does give an interesting look to the photos. Using a computer can really open up a new world for photography.

And then of course there is the whole issue in the fashion industry of retouching pictures to make models look slimmer or bigger, or to remove any blemishes. Now I'm all for having a few spots removed on a bad day if I was going to be in a magazine, but I just feel that this excessive editing can create an unrealistic impression of what people are 'meant' to look like. We get bombarded every day on the 'perfect shape', what we should be wearing, how we should look etc by the media. So I feel that if the images we are shown aren't actually true to life, then this is just going to be all the more pressurising. We aren't meant to look like anyone but ourselves.Who else could we be? Unrealisitc images create unrealistic expectations. Having said that, I know that fashion magazines are a kind of fantasy version of things, but not everyone is going to realise that.
Why can't we embrace ourselves as we are and appreciate that? And I feel it is sometimes the flaws that make us look so unique. My teeth have quite big gap, and aren't very straight but I like them!

So what do you think about this? Do you agree with the retouching in magazines, or do you like unchanged photos? I would really love to hear your views.


AVY said...

I don't like un-edited pictures, especially of people, but there is such as thing as too much editing too. Either a picture is good or it's not, if ot's good you can enhance it by editing in a sublte way, but making a bad picture into a good one using a computer is just fraud.

Saoirse (seer - sha) said...

This is too adorable! You really are stunning!
Hope you feel better darling.

Natalie said...

I'm a photographer and photo editor but I NEVER edit a person's features, like airbrushing and such, I think it's the most pointless thing in the world. Girls get obsessed with how they look because they see 'perfect' models, when alot of it is airbrushed. Even in magazines now they get away with it, L'Oreal and Maybelline are constantly getting away with airbrushing their models when you can clearly see that they have been. Girls should be kept natural, the way they were born. Not altered.

Panda said...

I love this photoshoot! Its gorgeous, and that top is stunning. Lace + satin = the best :)

Panda xx

issyyyy said...

very pretty!
the photos are great!

Fashlynable said...

I think retouched photos are somewhat ok as long as they don't alter what the person TRULY looks like. If it is for an important photograph that's going to be seen the rest of the individual's life they may choose to have it retouched. I also love to play with pictures on photoshop to create a different atmosphere. However, my pictures are usually exactly as they appear. I definitely don't retouch myself to get rid of any blemishes or dark circles. And on that note, you are blessed with gorgeous skin.
I really hope you feel better!

Jacqueline said...

I hope you feel better soon. You look beautiful and I adore the bow in your hair. Visit my blog sometime. I would love it if you did =) xoxo

Cameron said...

Keep it real. Retouch zits, yes, bodies, no. You appreciate the blue floral stuff's former life. What excites me most about the future is our ability to (re)use the abundance at hand, be it vintage, upcycled or a remix.

The Coffee Cup said...

Let me start with the pictures. I LOVE THEM ALL! You are so beautiful and super fashionable! If're original and you rock it well! You are a natural model. I have to say that I hate saying this, but I do prefer that photography and models be retouched. It makes the photo so much better in my opinion. I do disagree with the weight requirements or standards in the modeling business. I think models should be skinny but not exaggeratedly skinny. There is one thing to be normal and another to cross the line to what is not normal.
check out my trendy blog!

Dylana said...

That bow suits you perfectly!

Natalie said...

i really love ur bow in ur hair! so cute :))


Christina Love said...

Love the blog!

styleodyssey said...

Very charming photos, dear Roz! I cannot tell you're getting ill from the close-up.

I normally do very little editing to my blog pics, mostly cropping and color. Sometimes I have a lot of mosquito bites; if they detract, I'll erase them, 'though I usually don't.

I don't mind a little editing on other's photos. I even like special effects, depending on the nature of the photos.
What I can't stand is excessive photo-shopping in magazines. It's completely unnecessary! It just ends up looking fake, if over-edited. This is one reason I rarely buy magazines anymore.

Thanks for the debates- always interesting!

Lexy @ Quirky Explosion said...

Such gorgeous photos. You pull of your outfits so well; I love how you play with different shades of blues. And that bow = lurrrve.

You remind me of a doll. In a good way, no doubt!

Lemondrop Marie said...

These are so gorgeous, your eyes are so lovely! The retouched photo issue is one that we may never be free of, but it does make all of us judge ourselves harshly.
Marie @ Lemondrop ViNtAge

Amelia said...

Fun shoot! I love the bow.

zoë said...

the shirt and skirt are absolutely to die for, they're beautiful!
i also went to the rankin exhibition a while back and it completely reopened a private debate i've been holding for a while. as a rule, i hold little respect for photographers who unashamedly retouch their photos, adding in scenery and completely changing the original composition of the photograph. however, rankin made me think differently. it's something you have to be very skilled at to make it look fairly realistic, and he does so brilliantly.
as for magazines? i don't think photos should be retouched. end of. it's a lot like disney, the more you watch it as a little girl, the higher and more fancy your expectations of men become. the more and more you take in the pictures of these beautiful women who've had their faces reshaped and their necks lengthened, the more you come to think of that as 'correct'. by no stretch of the imagination am i saying that the way models in magazines look 'wrong', but the repetitive nature of their shape and style of looks has become normal.
sorryy! i just majorly clogged up your comment wall.. (:

Ruxandra said...

Hello dear:)
It's been quite some time since i last visited your blog...Beautiful shoot, as usual.
As for the debate...well, i am totally for naturality.I mean, it's ok to retouch and edit photos, but just for an exposition or an experiment, not for creating that obsessing "perfect girl" image...
Take care!
Love, Ruxandra

Adela said...

hey roz! i'm back! i have been keeping up with reading your delightful posts, and must say that your creativy and lovliness is getting better day by day! =) i really like your alce in wonderland look in this photo shoot. my opinion in the debate: (btw i like how you have debates!) i think that it is ok to edit your photos as far as the lighting and saturation, and touch up some acne or blemishes (i do all of those with my photos) but as far as alterning your body shape to look skinnier, that is just wrong and deceptive. i am curious-by editing, do you mean facial and body edits, or does this apply to photographic elemnts like lighting? do you edit your pictures as far as the lighting and saturation and such?

Sylvie said...

That last picture's really beautiful. I really admire that you have a rule of not touching up your pictures. My uncle is a photographer and has been for about 40 years, but he says that now taking the picture is only half the process. I think he was really taken by the advances in technology and how much can now be done to achieve the result you most want. I really don't like photos that become unnatural looking, but I think there is definitely something alright in trying out new techniques. The way of working with contrast and saturation is simply a part of the process for me...I love to see what I can do differently next time and how things look in a slightly different light. Anyway, it's a very interesting debate! I hope you're feeling better!

Laura Gerencser said...

So cute! One of my fave photo shoots!

Maria said...

hi dear,
sweet photos (as always you are fantastic)!!!
the 4photo is my favorite - like a little girl!!
perfect shoes, i'm always looking for ones like them!!


Raez said...

gorgeous;) i lvoe your take on alice:):)

and to answer your debate..i edit all my photos. I mean, obviously I'm not good enough to edit myself a size 00, but even if i did, i dont think i would. all i ever edit is the lighting, RGB curves and the occasional pesky zit;)

i think that editing is natural in this industry as everything must be flawless, but i also think that it shouldn't be abused. there's something awesome about natural beauty and who would wanna change that?

that said, i try not edit my models (and me) unless absolutely necessary. enchancement is good. complete fakeness is not.

xx raez

amelia said...

wow i love your skirt! i wish i had the patience to make something like that, but im not good at sewing... just ask my tech teacher...
i just found your blog and i was interested because your close to the same age as me, and there don't seem to be many fashion blogs written by teenagers like us- most of the blogs i read are by people in their 20s and 30s. woah that was a really long sentence...
anyways,great blog and i hope you're feeling better soon!

chaoskontrolowany said...

Beautiful bow and I love the photos! ;))

Lauren said...

i hope you feel better soon! being sick is no fun. also, stunning photos - i love your bow. it reminds me of the s/s 2010 marc by marc collection. i've been wanting to try to make a bow like that.
as far as photos go, i think i prefer them untouched. a little editing can be nice sometimes, but i think that editing too much actually diminishes the quality of the photo. plus, i like the organic feel of fashion blogger photos. yours always look wonderful! :)

Sofie Marie said...

Thank you for the lovely comment on my blog,it's nice to get comments...esspecially from bloggers who get so many comments and have many followers.Nice to know you visited my little blog! I was looking at your profile,you like many of the same books and music as me!-I am reading Wuthering Heights at the moment :)

Tati said...

these look great Roz!
i really like the bow in your hair and I love the 5th picture where your hand casts a cool shadow on the wall.

Sorry for not having commented in a while but I have been reading your posts. They are always fabulous but I do really love this one.

as for your debate (love the debate idea by the way) i think that re-touching acne and zits are okay (i do it all the time) but i think that altering someones body is just wrong. People always try to portray the "perfect body", but what is that anyway?
I love the entire concept of modeling and taking pictures (i love to do it) but trying to be a certain way because the media looks up to it is not what i think beauty is.

keep posting

Marie said...

The skirt is so so cute! I want one (= And it looks great with the bow. Keep it up.

Elaine said...

I think edite dpictures are okay as long as it doesn't make the pciture or subject unrecognizable! I also realize the importance of retouching for L'oreal and Maybelline. they're a makeup company and they epitomize perfect skin so of course they're giong to distort the public's eye of their products and make it look like they give you perfect skin when in actuality they won't, but for magazines ingeneral, I don't see why they have to make everything look TOO perfect. I admit, I do some retouching for my pictures! Just a little blemish removing here and there and then I adjust the brightness and contrast!

BTW, Love the bow!

Taylor Sterling said...

what cute photos! I love this Alice look! Cute bow.

Kat said...

i wish you a wonderful new year!
that outfit is fabulous, the big bow is too cool :)

The Trendy Fashionista said...

I totally love the bow. It's soo chic!

-The Trendy Fashionista

sariepoo said...

You yourself are the perfect example of how you dont hav 2 be completly photoshopped or wear haute couture to look jaw droppingly beautiful!

I love ur blog! It is so amazing and inspiring! Sarah x