GL_Prada_1997

Prada Campaign 1997

Photographer: Glen Luchford

Fashion photography has ebbed and flowed along side the fashion industry. Very similar to fashion, fashion photography relies on constant change. During the 1990’s fashion photography started to become more realistic (Berry 2014)(1). Trends in photography started to allow the viewers to place themselves within the image through the use of serial imagery to convey a storyline and the cinematic appearance of some of these images. The cinematic tendency we are currently seeing in fashion photography draws on aspects of modern photography. Another such trend used by many fashion photographers is the concept of deathliness, portraying the model as either dead or diseased in morbid backdrops. These scenes and scenarios exercise a dominant aspect in both art and fashion photography, the idea of the private, with the photographers taking us behind the scenes of a crime or a high-class woman’s life. Giving the viewer a taste of something they wouldn’t normally see.

One such fashion photographer who incorporates these themes is Glen Luchford a British photographer who has worked with the likes of Nick Knight back in the early 1990’s. During this time in photography the photographers personal expression started to become more important then the designer clothes (Kismaric & Respini 2008 p.36)(2). Kismaric and Respini (2008, p 37) state that Luchford’s images are ‘rife with tension, eroticism and theatricality’, challenging fact and fiction. Drawing inspiration from David Lynch’s 1986 film ‘Blue Velvet’ (Kismaric & Respini 2008 p.36)(2) Luchford shot cinematic stills for Prada’s 1997 and 1998 campaign. In many of his shots for the campaign only parts of the models bodies are seen. His carefully framed, cropped images create a claustrophobic environment for the viewer. In one image a women peers through a spy hole in a door as if checking if she is being followed. In another photograph in the campaign, a woman’s legs are suggestively tied together in red ribbon lie lifeless within a murky backdrop. Both images leave the viewer to draw their own conclusions regarding the models unfortunate situation. This deathly cinematic scene now graces the pages of well-known fashion magazines.

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Prada Campaign 1997

Photographer: Glen Luchford

(1) Berry, J 2014, ‘Fashion Photography: From Heroin Chic to Narrative Glamour’, retrieved from Griffith University, Queensland College of Art, Learning@Griffith website: <https://bblearn.griffith.edu.au/bbcswebdav/pid-1010411-dt-content-rid-2625164_1/courses/2432QCA_3145_SB/Course%20Content/Week%204%20Contemporary%20Fashion%20

(2) Kismaric, S & Respini, E 2008, ‘Fashioning Fiction in Photography since 1990’, in E Shinkle (ed), Fashion as photograph: viewing and reviewing images of fashion, New York: I.B.Tauris, London, pp. 36-38.

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