Some good friends of mine recently had a new addition to their family. Meet Billy Brannan, two week old son of Richard and Michelle.
SmokeShow was pleased to welcome Frame Creatives to the studio yesterday evening. Frame provides a platform for Midlands based photographers, and last night they offered our in house stylist, Sy-Anne, a platform to showcase the added value of working with a stylist. Here's a snap from the audience catching Sy mid-word, mid-stride, and mid-elaborate hand gesture! 10495979_10205189418488091_5437077235401445759_o You can see our gallery and that of the other members here: http://www.framecreatives.com/?Action=_VC&id=175487402&ppwd=smokeshow
From the Palazzo pant to the blinder’s peak, sartorial shifts have coincided with our cultural landscape for most of the last century. But these days, even as the likes of Apple bombard us with non-stop newness, popular clothing styles have been stuck on repeat, consuming the past instead of creating the new. Ironically, new technology has reinforced looking back: at the click of a button we have instant universal access to an archive of street style, the future has arrived and it’s all about dreaming of the past. Nothing dates an image more specifically than the kinds of clothes people are wearing - just google jeans across the decades to prove the point. But what can we say about today’s style status quo, where seemingly nothing is obsolete, and nothing is really new? Can we really define the fashion movement of the 21st century or have we hit a stylistic ice age? Designers have turned their nostalgic cultural gaze to the 70s this season but that doesn’t mean we all need to reach for fabrics that are going to set you on fire if you look at a radiator. The new interpretation of 70s is literally rose-tinted with blurred edges, much like a happy memory. Disco isn’t dead, it’s just more honey coloured, clean, contemporary and minimalist. In fact many of today’s taste makers were born in the 1970s - these people can actually remember what life was like before we had to be constantly connected to a screen at all times. Perhaps this been there done that mash up age is a collective reaction to today’s hectic digital world full of technological disruptions. I’m certainly not anti-innovation or technology, and you only have to look at the marriage of function and fashion within sportswear & 3D printing techniques to work out that the industry isn’t either. I am, however, all for this current period in style where we take influences from the past and give them a 21st century facelift. Today, diversity and freedom rule and fashion implies wearing what looks good on you, flares, shoulder pads (I went there) dropped waists are all co-existing in harmony as one big happy family.
We had Rude Mod twins, Del and Bes in the studio last week. Ian, interested in mod culture, met them at a 'do' in Brum and asked to take their portrait. We spoke of rude boys growing up in Birmingham in the 70's - scooters, fashion music and occasional rivalry with other sub cultures. And [...]
SmokeShow recently joined Frame Creatives - A platform for Midlands based photographers. You can see our gallery and that of the other members here: http://www.framecreatives.com/?Action=_VC&id=175487402&ppwd=smokeshow
Above is a photographic portrait we produced for our 'Brum Creatives' portrait project that we exhibited in 2014, featured as the front cover of the latest edition of 'My Moseley & Kings Heath' magazine. The purpose of the project was to showcase the story of talented Birmingham Creatives through considered art direction, photography & styling. Steve Ajao has been amazing Brummie music lovers for over 30 years, performing with Steve Ajao's Blues Giants, as well as performing solo. Steve is accomplished both on guitar - electric, acoustic & dobro, and saxophone - tenor, alto & soprano. His talents don't stop at music and he is also an accomplished artist, we had the privilege of viewing some of his work at his home where we shot this portrait. Styling was provided by Atoo menswear, a long established and well loved independent menswear boutique in Birmingham that has sadly recently closed its doors. The relaxed boxy fit 'Creep' painters coat in a natural coloured textured jacquard cotton seemed the perfect choice for Steve, who maintains a mild mannered sunny demeanor despite being considered as a local legend. Steve's own garden porch seemed the perfect setting to capture the influences of the American deep south, the home of blues and a big influence on Steve's musical journey. Thanks to Steve for making us feel right at home, thanks to Atoo for the clothing and to the Custard Factory's Whatnot & Doodah for the hand painted porch rocking chair. Also thanks to My Moseley & Kings Heath for the front cover.
According to Wikipedia ... At a retail in-store level, merchandising refers to the variety of products available for sale and the display of those products in such a way that it stimulates interest and entices customers to make a purchase. This includes discounting, physical presentation of products and displays, and the decisions about which products should be presented to which customers at what time. Clearly this store doesn't think much of their demographic.....or maybe it just felt right!