Sunday, 03 April 2011

My Life In Fashion

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I moved to Toronto in September 2010. Although the fashion industry here is not as big as in London, Paris or New York, somehow being here inspired me to stand on the other side of the lens and get involved in photography. I have been shooting for a while especially when I travelled to other countries, but my main goal was to get into fashion photography. Since I remember, I was always fascinated by images in Vogue magazine and the work of great photographers like Richard Avedon or Mario Testino... Having worked in the fashion industry for a while and having some modelling experience, it seemed like a step in the right direction. And yes, it has been a great adventure so far. I had an opportunity to collaborate with many talented models and make-up artists, learn about the studio lighting and practice my styling skills.
My first photoshoot with a NY model & actress – Roxanne Wright Dress: a great purchase from a local market in Mui Ne (Vietnam)

My first opportunity to shoot catwalk was very interesting – LG Fashion Week – the biggest fashion event in Canada, showcasing top Canadian models and designers. The show takes place twice a year – in March and October. Somehow I managed to get to the photographers pit for some of the shows, so I could really practice my photography skills. I was surrounded by some of the best people in the industry who were shooting for magazines like Elle or Flare –"Canadian version of Vogue".

LG Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2011; Photo by Eva Fydrych Designer: Amanda Lew Kee

Although LG Fashion Week is a great event, Canadian fashion in general is quite conservative. People don't really like to be different and stand out from the crowd. They like to see simple designs on the catwalk, regular clothes that they can wear on the street. Many designers have similar attitude and they are not willing to experiment too much, but rather produce a collection that can easily sell here. I would say fashion here is not very artistic or creative; it is very practical and down to earth.

Behind the scenes at Joy Couture Fashion Show in Toronto; Dress by Canadian designer Joy Couture

Shooting events and fashion shows is quite exciting as you never know what to expect and every time you learn something new. It is a great opportunity to meet people from the industry and see the latest beauty and fashion trends before anyone else. However, there is a lot of competition between photographers as everyone wants to get the best shots and you need to have a thick skin in order to survive...

Studio or location photoshoots require more preparation and a lot of work is done before the actual shoot takes place. Part of being a photographer is coming up with the concept/theme, organizing the wardrobe, casting a model, discussing your ideas with the make-up artist and the hairstylist, finding the right location. It is a very creative and rewarding work, where you can use your imagination and have full control over your project from the very beginning to the very end. The best photographers, in my opinion, are the ones who are innovative and think out of the box. It is important to be open-minded and ready to experiment. You never know which idea will work out best.

Beauty Event organised by Chacha Cosmetics in Yorkville, Toronto; Photo by Eva Fydrych

It wasn't hard to start photography, but I guess I had a lot of luck in the beginning and met some amazing people who were willing to help me out and share their knowledge and experience. Without them everything would be much more difficult.

I still have a lot to learn, it is just the beginning of a journey, but as Paulo Coelho said: "Impossible is just an opinion".

Studio 400 photoshoot; Photo & Styling by Eva Fydrych; Model: Kikunda