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The (UN)-Importance Of Wardrobe In Photography

A perusal of photography internet web sites today reveals conflicting information about models? wardrobes. Some sites suggest only designer-label fashion is appropriate for professional modeling photography. Others take an additional step and suggest only certain designs work in a given market and season. Some insist wardrobe doesn?t matter at all.

How do you know whom to believe?

We suggest, on a scale of one to ten with ten being high, wardrobe importance falls somewhere below a five. There are several reasons we assign less importance to clothing.

First, whether it?s lifestyle or commercial photography, we work angle and color and light to capture the beauty of the model, not her clothing. Unless the job is for a clothing company or designer, it?s the appealing glow of the model that is the focus of the picture. That appeal communicates to the viewer and, if the shot works, the message is one the photographer designed and intended the viewer to see and hear. If a viewer?s comment focuses on the model?s apparel, we?ve missed the mark.

Second, some models may have the mistaken notion that a certain wardrobe will create her preconceived idea of how she wants to look and be perceived. The ?look? and overall trend in fashion today is said to be chic and ladylike. But if every model?s portfolio had the chic and ladylike look, designers would soon come up with another ?look? that was ?current? and those portfolios would all have to be redone. We suggest using a wardrobe that compliments the model?s look, figure, hair, coloring and her natural beauty, and that communicates the intended message.

Third, consider the unique or unusual more important than wardrobe. One of the most compelling portfolios we created in the past couple of months included the model placed in a large bathtub surrounded by bubbles. We shot her head and face, wet hair messed in delightful disarray around her stunning face. There was no fashion wardrobe in sight. Yet the portfolio is electric and the model?s message was communicated without a wardrobe.

Don?t totally disregard the importance of wardrobe. Fashion is based on designers? ideas about what will be appealing for the next season. They are the experts. To some extent, designers decide what women will find desirable, and therefore purchase. They tell us what we will like and what we should buy if we want to have the latest wardrobe. However, sometimes the latest fashion looks great on every woman, and sometimes it doesn?t. Know what styles look good on you and keep wardrobe and fashion issues in perspective. Mandarich Photography is a dividion of Mandarich Media Group (MMG)

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