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The Sartorialist


Monday, August 31, 2009

Not Giving Up, NYC

I don't usually shoot homeless people. I don't find it romantic or appealing like a lot of street photographers, and if you asked homeless people they are probably not to happy about their situation either. That's why I was surprised to be so drawn to taking a picture of this gentleman.  

I was being interviewed for an article in British Vogue; and while we walked down Bowery back in April I barely stopped walking when I took the shot. Fiona Golfar, the writer, asked why I took the photo. At that moment I couldn't really explain - but I just had a feeling about the power and grace of how he was sitting there. It wasn't until later that night when I was working on the image that I realized why I had noticed this man.

Usually people in this man's position have given up hope. Maybe this gentleman has too, I don't know, but he hasn't given up his sense of self or his sense of expressing something about himself to the world. In my quick shot I had noticed his pale blue boots, what I hadn't noticed at first were the matching blue socks, blue trimmed gloves, and blue framed glasses. This shot isn't about fashion - but about someone who, while down on his luck, hasn't lost his need to communicate and express himself through style.

Looking at him dressed like this makes me feel that in some way he hasn't given in or given up.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

So What Do We Think About This?

This month Glamour magazine ran this photograph which has created quite a stir here in the US.

It seems women desperately want more images that highlight the variety of beauty that the female form has to offer. If that is true, then this should become one of the biggest selling issues in Conde Nast history.

Actually it just might become the biggest seller. When we wanted to do a post about this Tracy went to three different shops to find the magazine but all three were sold out. We had to scan this from the NY Post.

When I am shooting on the street older women and larger size women often say "no" to my request to shoot them. Actually, much more than any other category of people I shoot. I think they have a real suspicion about how the image will be used. I also think there continues to be a growing disconnect between the fashion community and "average" women in general

However, do you think that this economic crisis has forced the fashion community to open it's eyes a little bit to what the customers want?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

On the Street....Summer Pattern Mixing p2

I love the bold pattern of his jacket, and he takes it to a whole new level combining it with the small check pattern of his pants.

On the Street....West Village, NYC

Short skirts are so hard to wear in a sporty way. I thought this young lady did a great job looking sporty chic on a warm Summer day.

On the Street....Pattern Mixing to Beat the Heat, NYC

It's hot as New York in August here in New York in August. Nobody feels like getting dressed up, or even dressed for that matter. The city is awash in tiny solid color Summer dresses or tees and jean shorts.

However, there are occasional glimmers of inspiration. For example, this young lady without adding any extra layers was able to skillfully mix florals, dots, geometrics and lace into one chic but subtle summer look.

To me this shot isn't about if this look is perfect, but about the inspiration of doing a lot with a little. Actually I look at this and think about color mixing. If you kept the shape of all these pieces but each was a different color, or even shades of the same color - with or without the patterns.

Looks like this remind me that in Summer, even though we are working with fewer layers, we can still have fun playing with pattern.

On the Street....Watch It, NYC

It seems the watches on the guys in Europe (especially the Italians) are getting so big and gaudy that soon they will need two wrists to carry them.

I think that is why I don't wear a watch. With smart phones, iPods, etc. always having a time function it is hard to justify wearing such a ginormous hunk of metal.

However, I have had a growing fascination with small vintage watches. They are sleek, chic and almost hidden. I stopped this gentleman coming out of Starbucks because I thought his watch looked so cool, retro and yet totally modern.

So this question is for the guys - but answered by the ladies. Ladies, are you really attracted to guys with giant watches? Doesn't it feel like a bit of overcompensation? Or does it read like a symbol of success - like a shiny sporty car for your arm (and not much smaller)?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

On the Street....New York Bike, NYC

Maybe it is all of the new bike lanes (thanks Mayor Bloomberg), but New Yorkers have fallen in love with their bikes again. What I am proud of is that like any real style capital New Yorkers are doing it their way - sporty, sexy, and built for speed.

Just look at the difference between these New York ladies I shot yesterday and the young ladies Garance shot recently in Amsterdam. I'm not saying one is better than the other, but it is great that something like this can be so reflective of a cultures taste and aesthetics.

On the Street.... Starting the Transition

Mid weight cottons, rich colors, light is still the dog days of Summer, but transition is right around the corner.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

On the Street.... So Simple, Florence

Monday, August 24, 2009

On the Street.... Well Suited, Florence

On the Street.... at Pitti Uomo, Florence

Friday, August 21, 2009

On the Street....Garance Doré in Full Summer Beauty, Paris

On the Street....Grey Suit, Milan

How do they do it?
Without fail, no matter the miserable weather outside, September fashion magazines make me start dreaming of flannels and cashmere.

I guess I am partly to blame. I took this photo of a Cucinelli suit in Milan recently, for the September issue of GQ, and have been thinking about it ever since. Shame on me.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

On the Street....Seventh Ave., NYC

On the Street....Soho Bike, NYC

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

On the Street....Greene St., New York City

It has been so hot in NYC that it is actually refreshing to see a young lady in anything besides denim cutoff shorts.

On the Street....Childish Color, New York

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

On the Street....Fabrizio Against the Heat, Paris

Monday, August 17, 2009

On the Street...Fifth Ave., NYC

On the Street...Ninth Ave., NYC

With all white the slightest touch of color can be just enough.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

On the Street...Greene St., NYC

On the Street....Slim Sleeve, Florence

I love the simple color story of navy, tan and brown; but what really caught my eye was the slimness of their jacket sleeves. Look how narrow they are around the wrist - so many of today's jackets are cut so loose to fit everyone (or at least everyone with fat wrists).

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

On the Street....Crisp on a Hot Summer Day, Florence

A Simple Portrait

More than the Comme Des Garcons black/green camo jacket, I love the gentle spirit of this young man.

For me, the whole shot is about the way he holds his hands and his posture. This is where personal interpretation comes into play - is this heartbreaking? tender? calm? sad? reflective?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Sartorialist Via The Selby @ Lanvin Homme

My very plugged in assistant Tracy found this photograph of Lucas Ossendrijver's (Lanvin menswear) design studio on The Selby. Instantly she recognized two of my images on his inspiration board.

I often hear that designers use my images for inspiration, but I never believe it until I see it, so this is pretty cool.

I'm often asked in interviews if my photos have a direct effect on trends. I always say that designers don't really look at my site for direct copying, but instead for a spirit - and the photos that Lucas has chosen are a perfect example of this idea.

On the Street.... Mr. Rubinacci, Florence

On the Street.... Anna Dello Russo, Milan

Monday, August 10, 2009

On the Street.... Summer Plaid, Florence

So I guess the only question about this look is the belt/shoe coordination thing. I didn't even really notice they were unmatched until later, so for me it works because it's not distracting. However, I know a lot of people are very obsessed with things like this.

On the Street....The Man, Milan

It's his world and we are just his subjects.

On the Street.... Eva in Black & White, Milan

I know I shoot Eva a lot, but come on, when she looks like this all the time how can I not shoot her.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Style Piccoli

So finally I get to share the shoot I did for Style Piccoli with my kids and their friends. Claudia (above) is such a ham and a natural model. I would just tell her the concept of the character and she somehow just got it. I used to shoot kids a lot more, but I'm such a big kid that I could never get them to sit still or stop jumping on me long enough to get the shot.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

On the Street.... Model Style, Paris

Friday, August 07, 2009

On the Street.... So Simple, So Perfect, Paris

On the Street.... Vintage Shirt, Florence

What a great way to make a 50 year old vintage shirt look so new and modern. So often vintage just screams VINTAGE! I think it is a real skill to integrate vintage into a look and keep the viewer guessing if it is a modern piece or very old. I think that is a subtle, but huge part of the success of Prada.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

On the Street.... The Next Step, Florence

On the Street.... High-Top Cons and Jackets, Florence

When we first met.... Lucy

Above is Lucy, I took this picture when I first met her at a cafe in Melbourne. I thought she looked so cool sitting there during her coffee break - so French somehow. I knew the picture wasn't right for the blog, but when the Saba job came up she was one of the first people I suggested we shoot.

I'm really proud that with each of the people we shot we were able to maintain the true nature of the subject.

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