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News & Insight

Pro Fashion Photographer Challenge | Anita Sadowska VS Alex Hutchinson

By Brittany Smith on November 24th 2017

Fashion centric photography challenges on YouTube are a guilty pleasure and no two of them are exactly alike regardless how similar some of the themes may be. The short duration of the videos makes them easy to binge watch. It is fascinating to watch a scene unfold from behind the lens as each artist pursues it in their own way and see what can be achieved with the pressure mounting.

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Anita Sadowska is quickly becoming a favorite here at SLR Lounge and she joins in on the fun with Alex Hutchinson for capturing one of Ireland’s top models, Thalia Heffernan. Courtney Smith is the master of ceremonies and clads Thalia in the same outfit for both photographers with slight variations of styling to better match each photographer’s aesthetic. The theme of the challenge is interpretation of the outfit according to their own photographic style.

Neither photographer is allowed to observe the other’s photoshoot and neither knows what to expect going in. Alex and Anita are called into the natural light studio one by one after the completion of each look and are allotted three minutes to build their set and five additional minutes to capture their best version of it. This is a challenge in and of itself because creatives are easily inspired by other creatives, often building off of each image throughout the the shoot and the lack of observation adds to the difficulty of outshooting the other.

The final outfit presents each photographer with even more of a time constraint and the added twist of having to use the challenger’s camera and gear to capture their best image. The gear, as paramount and stellar as it is, is really a non-issue for both photographers and goes to show that a lot more goes into a successful photoshoot than gear alone.

Some of the best art is a well thought out collaboration that is equal parts give and take. This photo challenge is more akin to the real world of fashion in that it is the job of the photographer to manifest someone else’s vision. Last minute wardrobe and set changes do happen and a skilled photographer must be able to think on their feet and make any necessary changes on set swiftly.

Both Anita and Alex exude and exercise a fair amount of calmness throughout the entire challenge. They are able to develop a clear concept from the outfit and communicate with a top model to develop frames that work prevailing time after time. Thalia clearly exemplifies the added value of working with a top model who adeptly transforms into the sought after vision and conveys the desired mood.

Watching Anita and Alex adapt to each scene presented to them so quickly was a lot of fun and it is obvious that they have gained inherent knowledge throughout their experiences as fashion photographers. One thing that stands out while watching this unfold is that fashion photography is as instinctual as it is learned and it only continues to improve as both skills are continually enhanced.

The following video is a great watch and packed full of inspiration and lessons to take away and put into practice. Make sure to subscribe to Anita’s YouTube channel if you haven’t already and be prepared to invest a fair amount of time checking out the loads of content she has created and continues to create. You can also check out everyone’s Instagram to view all of the final works.

Gear Used:


Nikon D810 DSLR Camera

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Lens


Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Lens

Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM Lens

*Both of these camera bodies are on sale and come with free battery grips for Black Friday, and most of the lenses are on sale.


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Brittany is a fashion and beauty photographer who works between NYC, Montana and LA. She photographs the way she has always wanted to feel and believes in the power of raw simplicity. When not behind a camera she can usually be found at a local coffeeshop, teaching fitness classes at the YMCA, or baking something fabulous in the kitchen.
Instagram: @brittanysmithphoto

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