New York City is one of the most fashionable cities in the world and the city becomes even more of a center of attention during Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week (NYFW) as the fashion conscious of the world come to New York for the haute couture runway shows, satellite events and the latest street styles.
With entrance to designer shows becoming more exclusive, social media is now the way many get a glimpse of NYFW. And this is where the Tumblr Fashion Photo Showcase, presented by Tumblr and Sony, comes in. Milk Studios, in the Meatpacking District, was abuzz with the young and trendy for the opening for the Showcase on the first day of NYFW, Thursday, September 5. Hip-Hop sounds echoed through the space, delicate snacks were passed around and wine was sipped while the crowd reveled in the photography displayed on the walls .
Tumblr paired 20 high-caliber bloggers with 18 designers and two industry organizations. Each blogger received a Sony NEX-5R camera and a Xperia Tablet Z. The idea was for the bloggers to shadow their assigned partner and document the days leading up to fashion week: sitting in on meetings, model castings, and runway rehearsals. The results were presented as a photo exhibition at Milk.
The bloggers represent a variety of interests. Some like Nicole Loher, Sara Zucker and Jessie Cohen follow fashion trends. Freddy Rodriguez and Ryan Charchian look at personal style. Jamie Beck and Ashley Simko focus on fashion photography, while others like Hanneli Mustaparta and Giza Lagarce are models. The designers also represent a broad spectrum from Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Billy Reid, Anna Sui, Todd Snyder, Lela Rose and Phillip Crangi. Lucky Magazine was one of the participating organizations.
There was no shortage of style in Milk Studios that night — from spotless and put together to grungy and eclectic, from blazers to sneakers, from black to colorful ensembles. This was personal style at its best.
Personal style was also reflected in the photos as each blogger offered his own aesthetic. Some captured an intimate look at the craft like Brayant Eslava’s view of Band of Outsiders at a work desk or Miguel Yatco‘s revealing look behind the scenes with Oscar de la Renta, focused on ensemble details. Ira Chernova caught Rodarte runway action in black and white, but William Yan’s black and white close-up portrait of a model felt more calculated. Tactile elements and product details were highlighted in Jaimen Sfetko’s image from his time with Nanette Lapore, as did that of David Urbanke who was paired with Marc Jacobs. But the photographs produced by Rachel Schwartz and Noah Emrich played on reality in their collaborations with Lulu Frost and Shipley & Halmos respectively, using gem-like colors and photographic illusions. Mr.Gif’s GIF of a model from IMG Models, the other organizational partner, was played in a loop on a screen adjacent to the bar.
As Rachel Swartzmann, The Style Line blogger, explained, her work with CFDA was a “cool intimate experience” where she could just “let the photos happen.” Nicole Helmeid, ShoeLust blogger, felt similar creative freedom with Rebecca Minkoff, where she chose to photograph three of her favorite pairs of shoes of the season.
Valentine Uhovski, Tumblr’s new fashion director known as the Fashion Evangelist, has worked to revamp Tumblr’s involvement with NYFW in its sixth season. The creation of the Tumblr Fashion Photo Showcase, as blogger Swartzmann noted, has made the program more “personal,” which underlines what Uhovski’s stated goal of giving bloggers a very different kind of access to designers. The Showcase offers outsiders an inside look at fashion week. The show will be on display until September 12.
WHEN: Now through September 12, 2013
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