Fashion and photography have gone hand in hand for over a century. In the late 1800s, when cameras were still a new technology, the fashion industry gave photographers an opportunity to practice their craft and make a living. In turn, photographers gave the fashion industry the ability to reach an audience of unprecedented scale. From this partnership, fashion photography was born.
Now, more than a hundred years after its inception, fashion photography, which manages to strike an intriguing balance between advertising photography and fine art photography, plays a powerful role in shaping culture all over the world.
It’s easy to assume that the purpose of fashion photography is to sell clothing. This assumption is half true but lacks nuance. Fashion photography is about advertising a product. It is about selling a brand and making money. But it is also about artistic expression, cultural commentary, and reflecting the feeling of the here and now.
Fashion influences culture, and culture influences fashion. Fashion photographers are the intermediaries who make this interplay between the fashion industry and the general populace possible.
While people in cultural hubs like New York City and Los Angeles may be able to witness new and interesting styles from up-and-coming designers first hand, those in the flyover states must rely on fashion photographers to bring them up to speed on all that is fresh and trendy.
Through the power of photography, the fashion industry has achieved a global reach, and in doing so has been influential in uniting people from all over the world by giving them a few common cultural threads.
The pros and cons of globalization are hotly debated, and we won’t get into them here, but it’s hard to argue that giving disparate groups a little something to share (even if that something may seem frivolous or superficial at first glance) is a bad idea. So, next time you see the work of a fashion photographer, remember that it is doing more than just selling a product; it is cultivating a culture.
If you are interested in fashion photography, or find yourself in need of a fashion photographer in New York City or Los Angeles, consider checking out the work of celebrated fashion photographer Michael Grecco. For more information about Grecco’s photography services, call (310) 452-4461 or email email@example.com.