These four are from the delectable Dvora of Fashionistable, who is currently shooting all sorts of wonderful street style photos for Vogue UK. The green sixties dress visible in the photo above was the first ever item posted on this blog over three years ago. It defines longevity to me!
This was shot by Candice Lake for Vogue.com - catching me in the act of some note-taking that later formed the basis for my poem. The pink coat was a second hand eBay buy, but was spruced up with some vintage Chanel buttons kindly given to me by my grandma.
The whizzing, flashing merry-go-round that is fashion month is about to take another spin. There are certain calendar dates that, no matter how regularly and evenly they are organized, seem to pop up (or rather wobble around the corner in high heels) unexpectedly. When new schedules are being released already, it’s easy to fall into predictable cries of “What? But we’ve only just had the last one!”
Maybe part of the puzzlement lies in the pace of the fashion industry. It’s something I’ve touched on before – the idea that everything is increasingly instant and up to the minute. Platforms such as twitter and instagram allow for snippets and sneak peaks in a matter of seconds. A word often used in relation to this relatively new phenomenon is the “democratization” of fashion.
Whether it’s truly democratic is a debate for another time, but the word seems strangely apt in relation to what happens on the streets and pavements outside each venue. It is only in recent years that the interest at each fashion week has been divided between the inside and the outside. The inside is host to shows, presentations and exhibitions – new designs showcased for approval of the press and buyers. The outside is the land of street style. Here the cameras are not organized, brick-like, at the end of a catwalk as shutters click and flashes pop. Instead they are roaming – hung around necks and slung across shoulders – always on the move. Sometimes there are swarms of lenses, appearing like a chorus of clicking insects around a particular figure. It’s fascinating.
What this movement has given flight to are some fantastic street style photographers, including Vanessa Jackman, Dvora, David Nyanzi, Tommy Ton, Phil Oh and Candice Lake. Some photographers have an eye for colour, others for shape or a particularly mesmerizing face. It strikes me that the very best are those who capture the people as well as the outfits – celebrating both personality and creativity. Their work is compelling. I've been lucky enough to be shot by all of them, and was excitingly recently featured as a 'one to watch' on Style.com.
Last time I was at LFW in February, I was standing outside a show with a notebook in hand. In fact, the purple penguin-cover one featured in the last photo. I was scribbling down the details of the outfits around me: from glittering heels to cropped trousers to incredibly suave suits. From this messy list I extracted and shaped some of the images into the outline of a poem. The sight of twenty or thirty photographers hanging around outside the Royal Courts of Justice seemed to be the defining moment of LFW for me, and I wanted to preserve it. It’s easy to lose sight of the effort and hours put into producing and providing street style images. The ones I most appreciate are those who do not scrimp on their skill or integrity, no matter how little they slept the night before (thanks to uploading, editing and sending duties). I shall let the rest of the poem speak for itself:
'Shooting Party' poem from Rosalind Jana on Vimeo.
They gather for the hunt,
Grouping, readying, checking the light;
Wearing practical footwear and warm woolen coats
for air iced at the edges.
Smoke and gossip rise.
A glimpse of colour; a snap to attention; the shooting begins.
Shearling coats and spotted fur and shiny Chelsea boots,
Tailored waistcoats, thin, black gloves and khaki tweed cut suits.
Birds emerge past curlicued railings.
Every variety! Some with plumage of soft grey,
others with yellow or dusted pink.
The hunters point, focus, click
and chase down chosen subjects.
Floral blazers, patterned trousers, satin billowed skirts,
Pastel pleats and pointed toes and classic cream silk shirts.
Bright birds are briefly caught, ringed, recorded, set free.
Breeze lifts wings of fur and leather.
A flock of heels,
A ‘v’ of brogues,
tip-tapping on wet pavements.
Belted jumpers, purple blazers, a yellow, vintage mac,
Beanie hats and umbrellas – a suitcase stamped in black.
Winding galleries display the trophies,
prize selections framed by screens.
draws praise for a feather’s breath,
while the hunters return to tread grey paths
and shoot under London clouds.
As an addendum, I must mention that even my mum agreed that my voice sounds very different in this video. Oh, and as is apparent, I have braces (two months so far).