Fashion photography is without a doubt one of the most alluring genres of photography but arguably one of the hardest to break into. Not only does it require highly sophisticated technical skills plus a broad knowledge of lighting setups it also demands up-to-date knowledge of trends and a keen eye for style. Just taking photos of clothes isn't enough to break into this fiercely competitive world, you need to think about how things like location, accessories and poses elevate the narrative you're trying to convey. With the advent of cam chat and video conferencing tools, photographers can collaborate with stylists, models, and other creative professionals remotely.
1. Peter Lindbergh: On Fashion Photography
Follow Peter Lindbergh across four decades of pioneering fashion photography. Through countless collaborations with the most venerated names in fashion, the German photographer created new narratives with his humanist approach, which resulted in iconic shots at once introspective and appealing. This book features more than 300 images, many previously unpublished, as well as an updated introduction in which Lindbergh establishes his sentiment on “so-called fashion photography”.
2. The photographer's guide to posing - by Lindsay Adler (Author)
When photographing people, you can have a great composition, perfect light, and the right camera settings, but if your subject doesn’t look right if the pose is off the shot will not be a keeper. Posing is truly a crucial skill that photographers need to have in order to create great photographs. If you’re looking to improve your ability to pose your subjects whether they’re men, women, couples, or groups best-selling author and photographer Lindsay Adler’s The Photographer’s Guide to Posing: Techniques to Flatter Everyone is the perfect resource for you.
3. Lighting People: A Photographer's Reference - by Rossella Vanon (Author)
This book utilizes award winning photographer Rossella Vanon’s contemporary style and up-to-the-minute knowledge to teach how each kind of light works. This approach provides a key grounding for photographers, followed by creative techniques that go beyond traditional approaches. Unique to this book is a reference section that clearly presents a series of photographs of the same four models, representing different gender and ethnic groups, shot from different lighting positions and against different backgrounds.
4. Fashion: The Definitive Visual Guide: by DK (Author)
Learn about the evolution of costume and dress in this lavishly illustrated guide. From the extravagance of Ancient Egypt, through the legendary houses of Chanel and Dior, to today's catwalk sensations, this gorgeous, carefully curated collection shows how fashion reflects people and places, and captures the times in which they lived. Fashion is an indispensable work of reference whether you're a fashion-mad teen, a wannabe designer, or someone intrigued by the violent origins of the stiletto or the birth of bling. If it's ever been in fashion, it's in this book.
5. I Can Make You Feel Good: by Tyler Mitchell (Photographer)
Based in Brooklyn, Mitchell works across many genres to explore and document a new aesthetic of Blackness. I Can Make You Feel Good, is a 206-page celebration of photographer and filmmaker Tyler Mitchell's distinctive vision of a Black utopia. The book unifies and expands upon Mitchell's body of photography and film from his first US solo exhibition at the International Center of Photography (ICP) in New York.
Each page of I Can Make You Feel Good is full bleed and bathed in Mitchell's signature candy-colored palette. With no white space visible, the book's design mirrors the photographer's all-encompassing vision which is characterized by a use of glowing natural light and rich color to portray the young Black men and women he photographs with intimacy and optimism.
6. Tom Ford Hardcover
Tom Ford has become one of fashion's great icons. This book is a complete catalogue of Ford's design work for both Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent from 1994 to 2004. It chronicles not only Ford's clothing and accessories designs for both houses, but also explores Ford's grand vision for the complete design of a brand, including architecture, store design, and advertising.
Tom Ford features more than 200 photographs by Richard Avedon, Mario Testino, Steven Meisel, Helmut Newton, Herb Ritts, Terry Richardson, Craig McDean, Todd Eberle, and numerous other photographers including many previously unpublished images. Published to coincide with his departure from Gucci, this book has been created with Ford's full cooperation and every page reflects his exceptional taste. It is Ford's testament to a career of singular moments reinventing the boundaries of style and sensuality in clothing.
In conclusion, breaking into the world of fashion photography is not an easy feat, as it demands a combination of technical skills, knowledge of trends, and a keen eye for style. However, there are various resources available to improve one's skills and knowledge. These books provide insight into different aspects of fashion photography, including composition, posing, lighting, fashion history, and the work of notable fashion icons. By utilizing these resources, aspiring fashion photographers can hone their craft and potentially break into this fiercely competitive industry.