Laura De Meo Muses over Photographing Fashion Events
2020 sees a shiny new category for the Event Photography Awards – Fashion. Be it behind the scenes or the excitement of the catwalk, this is the category to showcase the dedication of those in the industry and well as the glitz and glamour of Fashion Events. But what should you be looking out for to create captivating fashion events photography? We catch up with event photographer Laura de Meo who was highly commended in last year's edition of the Event Photography Awards to find out more.
Fashion is something that Laura stumbled upon by chance. After arriving in Africa to cover a conference for the press on the social-political aspect of fashion in Africa to find out it was cancelled. She found herself being invited to stay for the catwalk show’s at Africa Fashion Week instead. From then on, she was captivated by the industry. Which goes to show that opportunities and inspiration can come from the most unlikely situations. Laura shares her thoughts on covering fashion events, reflecting over her key areas of focus: Backstage, The Catwalk and the Public as well as tips on kit. Read on to find out what she has to say.
Backstage - Behind the Scenes
It’s a world of its own. There are many stories taking place there thanks to the interactions between different people. The make-up artists, designers, volunteers, apprentices, all working in teams, sometimes for the very first time. I like to capture what these people do and above all, how they do it. On the other hand, the models, though 'protagonists' in the catwalk, are kind of 'lost' in this chaotic space waiting for directions. They’re a ‘work in progress’ waiting for someone to do their hair, their make-up or to dress them. They are not really part of the team, but more the result of the teamwork. I like to capture the look of that individual lost in their world before the show.
Catwalk - The Show
It’s the core of the fashion show. Some designers have themes for their collection’s others want to send a social message. If there is one, I want to capture it. I like to include the public in the frame when the model is walking, it helps tell a story. The catwalk also gives the chance for a more studio type of photography, I like to capture beauty in an artistic way. A stunning model styled in amazing clothes, will not necessarily give a beautiful photo. On the Catwalk, the elements are there, but I must wait for the moment they unfold. The moment where lines, shapes and colours come together and create a perfect composition.
Public- Audience Reactions
Backstage and Catwalk are the main parts of a fashion show. However, the public also offers many photo opportunities, their reactions and participation. What I like about a Fashion Event is that you have different aspects and potential for different types of photography all in one place. There is no doubt that fashion is about clothing and products, but for me, it is also the people that create it and those that want to be in it or see it. That’s why, despite having photographed fashion for several years now, I don’t see myself as a fashion photographer, but as a photographer that photographs fashion.
Kit and Technical
Being prepared and finding the right tools for the job is essential for a successful shoot. When backstage Laura uses a 24-105mm lens. It gives flexibility, working well for portraits, but also for capturing groups of 2-3 people in the frame especially when space is tight. Laura switches it up on the catwalk using a 70-200mm lens. She will be sure to bring a few accessories to make being in the pit more comfortable - a monopod and stool. Knowing your kit inside out is a must. Setting the white balance when the official lighting in on before the show starts and shooting in RAW to give greater options during postproduction is a priority for Laura.
We are excited to see what fantastic fashion shows Laura covers this year and wish her the best for the 2020 events season!
Do you have some dazzling fashion events photos? We would love to see them, click here to enter the 2020 Event Photography Awards!
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