I’ve gone out properly on the streets a handful of times now in the name of the ‘gram. As much as I bloody well adore the content that’s created, there are some things I didn’t really factor in when it came to ‘getting the shot’.
You see all of these gorgeous feeds, with gorgeous clothes and it all looks so effortless and off the cuff. LOL JK I WAS SO WRONG. This is not the case, and so whilst I have limited experience compared to so many others, I think it’s high time to debunk all of the myths that are around shooting street style.
It could be a dreary winter day, it’s grey and thus it makes everything else look dull and poop. Slap on a filter, brighten up the darkness and saturate those colours and BAM. Suddenly London and your outfit is lookin’ poppin’.
It could be snowing, it could be raining, it could be boiling sunshine. Either way, you’re standing out in it. You’re removing or putting on layers you really don’t want to all in the name of ‘the outfit’. Katie and I once shot just as it was about to snow, and my coat was sat on top of a pile, with my tights neatly folded inside my bag. If you could see the pain behind my eyes you wouldn’t believe the blase smile I’ve plastered on.
If there was £1 for every comment or lingering stare I’ve gotten whilst shooting, I could pack in work and actually be a full time blogger. The comments and stares are in 4 categories: 1. The lingering and confused stare, ‘what the hell is that girl doing?’. 2. The comment of confidence, usually from other girls that cheer you on as you try and get sassy in front of the camera. 3. The stink eye, the judgements as people walk past thinking you’re an arrogant swine for wanting photos of yourself. And 4. The rude comment, people telling you to get over yourself, the people that roll their eyes and tisk you as they pass by, and the one’s who think you’re so self involved that you should be embarrassed.
It’s a harsh truth, but one you just have to learn to phase out.
When you’re in a prime location and the time has come to quickly change into the next outfit and there’s no Starbucks around to sneak into. Behind a bin or round a corner will have to do. Whoever you’re with will have to keep watch as you expose yourself to the elements, whilst you try desperately not to drop any of your possessions in that suspicious looking puddle.
If you do make it to a bathroom of a local coffee shop or the likes of, the chances of it being clean enough for you to not step out of one shoe and into another are limited. I’ve actually found that minus being at mercy to the elements and strangers not getting an eyeful, the street is sometimes nicer to change in. Let’s just say you’d be horrified by some of the London coffee shops.
Whilst you’re trotting around trying to find cute backdrops, the chances are you’ll bump into other people doing exactly the same thing you are. Competition is fierce when it comes to street style creation. Who has the best camera equipment? Who’s going to vlog the day as well and film content as well as photos? Which of you is going to be re-posted by the brands? Who’s going to find the best locations before the crowds and rain arrives?
And the thing that shocked me the most. It’s so tiring. I’d hear some of my favourite bloggers and creators say how knackered they were after a full day of shooting, and ignorantly I would throw my head back and snort ‘it can’t be that hard!’. Ahh how foolish you were Jade. Travelling from location to location, lugging around suitcases and bags, trying to find locations you like before crowds and whilst dodging traffic. Actually shooting the photos, 100s of different angles and poses, all of which with a smile on trying to look easy breezy when all you want is a lay down.
I tip my hats to you full time content creators and photographers. You are the unsung heroes, who have to defend themselves and their jobs to others constantly as the world catches up.