An Introduction to Fashion Photography

By Tara Giancaspro
I have experience with just about every type of photography you can think of. I have snapped concerts, sporting events, portraits, plays and musicals, still-lifes, speeches and presentations. I have photographed the President. I have photographed the Vice President. I’ve photographed Bill Cosby, twice. But I had never before photographed a fashion spread, and to my own surprise I found the experience, at first, a bit daunting. The fashion industry and its players are strong-willed people with forceful and creative ideas. I saw these same traits when I worked with my classmates on my first shoot, an Old Hollywood “behind the scenes” display. My classmates had clear ideas and a clear vision. When I am hired or asked to photograph, I am often given little or no direction. And while that freedom is appreciated, it also leaves me at risk to wind up with photographs that those involved do not love. With the direction of my classmates, I was able to secure that their vision and their goals would be represented, and hopefully enriched by my own stylistic touches and shooting style. I feel that this shoot was educational. I taught myself how to focus on the clothing and accessories, and how to frame, light, and position a model to best accentuate their features and the outfits they wear. With the retro styles we featured, it was important to find the best way to capture the flow and sweep of the beautiful dresses we worked with, to give the pictures lively movement. This photoshoot was supposed to convey a sense of the accidental. Sophie, pictured above, accidentally broke her strand of pearls, creating a funny moment for us to capture, resulting in photos that I believe will be featured in the final layout for the magazine. The shot above was also an accident of sorts – the models were simply waiting around for direction, and I liked what I saw. I did not think that so many ideas would come to us on the fly, but they did, and I am grateful for that. I think that this shoot was one of my favorites that I have ever done.

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