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Fashion 101 | A Primer On Cameras, Lenses, & Most Importantly, Genres

By Kishore Sawh on May 22nd 2017

If you shoot, or aspire to shoot fashion, glamour, lifestyle, beauty, do yourself and everyone else a favor and watch this video. In fact, you don’t even need to watch it, you can have it playing like some sort of acoustic wallpaper as you do something else, but do consume it. I would even recommend doing so before having another conversation about those genres because in a rather unapologetic way, Clinton Lubbe of YouTube’s Dphog, gives a primer on what so many are getting wrong about ‘fashion’ photography, and can save some embarrassment.

[RELATED: How To Shoot Fashion Portraits & The Psychology Behind Them]

The video starts out addressing camera choices and lens choices and why, and while that’s more debatable the real value of this video is what comes after. Perhaps one of the most pervasive motifs in photography today is the issue of photographers saying they shoot a genre that they actually don’t. Not that they’re speaking to mislead, but rather appear to have been mislead or don’t understand, and we see this all the time especially under the umbrella of ‘fashion’. There seems to be this persistent mixing of thought that any shoot with a model is fashion, but it couldn’t be farther from the truth, and this is perpetuated by educators as well which makes it insidious. Fortunately, however, Clinton takes the time in this video to address the elephant in the room and clarify it.

Lenses Mentioned (Appears To Shoot Canon In Video:

Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM

Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM

Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM

*If you’re a Canon shooter check out these Canon sales going on right now.

It’s an 18 minute video and only part 1 of 2, but within that stretch of time an absolute torrent of information is dispensed, and no doubt it will be filled with ‘a-ha’ moments for many. Throughout he will give his interpretation of what fashion is, how high fashion and commercial fashion differ, and expose the thinking behind each definition with some historical context. Naturally this leads into explaining the variances between glamour and look-book, and lifestyle and so on, and frankly, if you’re honest with yourself, I’d wager many of you watching will conclude you don’t shoot fashion at all, and that’s not a bad thing.

Once you understand what the genres are and thus, which you shoot, you can begin to be better and more focused, or of course branch out and understand how to group your work. Also, this kind of education will help you not make a fool of yourself in conversation with other photographers, agencies, clients, models and so on.

Anyway, a really really good watch, and I implore you to set aside the time for it.

About

A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

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