Monday, 29 March 2010

Fashion Photography and the North

After looking at Fashion and Art and its crossovers, we then looked at Fashion photography and the north: predominantly at Agyness Deyn.

It seemed that when Deyn became famous, so did the north. When she began gaining more fame, she moved to London to ‘follow her dream’ but Adam, our lecturer mentioned that she had moved to London, previously, then came back up north, and then moved back to London. We very rarely hear of this part of her life, it seems the media really wanted to build up the hype and the aspirational aspect of this ‘northern lass’ fulfilling her dream.

We also looked at fashion shoots that Deyn had been in and analysed the imagery. I really like Agyness Deyn as a model I love her look, my liking of her became stronger as her fame did, she was seen in every magazine and newspaper. There was a shoot she did for I.D. in fact the whole issue was dedicated to her, a couple of years ago which I loved. But, as we analysed the imagery in the class, you can really see that the photographers and the creative directors that showcased this new model, didn’t really choose creative ideas that successfully, the imagery kinda patronised Northern culture by using heavily stereotypical Northern settings and stereotypes.

We looked at the shoot for Vogue, in 2008 named ’Angel of the North’, shot by Tim Walker.

The shoot portrayed this northern girl in heavily stereotypical northern settings. For instance, the shoot was shot in a country-like setting, quite nostalgic like, it looks like it was shot in a northern place, near to where Deyn was born (very near to Preston) but they chose a location that is probably the most northern (geographically) in the UK. The shoot had quite a romanticised view of the north, compared to ‘Mass Observation’ a photo shoot shot in the mid 30’s in Bolton. The idea of the ‘kitchen sink’ cinema is really highlighted in the shoot, the imagery looked similar to that of the film ’A taste of Honey’ in comparison to the shoot shot for I.D. magazine in may 2008 named ‘Origins’.

Deyn had been placed in Manchester, there’s an actual shot of Deyn’s college where she used to study when she was younger and again it seems the photographer and art director chose creative elements that weren’t very creative and were too obvious. The images seemed to just celebrate the working class of the north, almost like saying that the whole of the north were like this there were no other types. I mean, yes it’s a positive thing that fashion moved out of the capital, showing that fashion isn’t only embraced in the capital but around the UK, but still it seems too typical and literal.

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