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London Fashion Weekend 2009 at Somerset House

London Fashion Weekend 2009 at Somerset House - Jane Hobson went along to Somerset House to capture all the action for ePHOTOzine.

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London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
Having been sent by ePHOTOzine to cover London Fashion Weekend at Somerset House on Saturday, I thought all that was required was to get a few decent snaps of the models coming down the runway, a few shots of happy punters, do a written piece and that was about it...not so!

I was excited enough anyway. Now I’m no fashionista, by any stretch of the imagination, as anyone who's met me will attest to, but I'm strangely attracted to bags, shoes and other nice items, which there were in huge abundance on the designer stands. Those who do know me will also attest to the fact that the ‘bargain’ gene is definitely not missing from my DNA. So, to drag myself away from a gorgeous, supple, silky-smooth, heavily discounted, leather, Alison Van Der Lande bag to go and shoot the catwalk show was quite hard. But shoot it I must so off I toddled, in the direction of the catwalk marquee.

Having got there early enough to install myself in a prime position, slap bang at the end of the runway, I chatted idly to the only other tog there, a student who had only found out about the show the day before. So, when the show’s producer came over
and asked if if anyone was from the press, I was even more excited.

London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
Louise Roe, fashion journalist, TV presenter and model, who was presenting the catwalk show, had borrowed two outfits from Ralph Lauren and there was nobody to shoot her in them for the designer. Having immediately been made the official photographer, the producer ushered me backstage to meet Louise. Quickly selecting a black background with ‘London Fashion Week’ all over it, I took pictures of Louise in the two outfits, at full length and three quarters.

Owing to the narrowness of the space between wall and background, I swapped lenses from the 70 – 200mm f/2.8 I had put on for the show to the 28 – 70mm f/2.8 I had been using for the happy punter shots, and shot on a slight angle to the background. As it was a fairly dark space, away from the main dressing room lights (which were daylight balanced to get the make up right), with a shadow falling on her face, I needed a little fill in flash with a diffuser, whilst exposing for the ambient light.




London Fashion Weekend London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Louise Roe.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
London Fashion Weekend.
Louise Roe.
Photo by Jane Hobson.

We then grabbed a few more shots with the dressing room as background before I asked Louise for her impressions of the event and how she felt about presenting it.

London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
Louise said:"This morning I’m a little bit sleepy, this is my second Starbucks of the day. No, it’s brilliant, I did it last season. It’s always a lovely crowd of people who are genuinely passionate about the clothes that they are seeing, so they’re really interested. We have a laugh as well - we do a bit of a walk-off half way through for a goodie bag. So, no, it’s an honour. Somerset House is a stunning venue. I saw Naomi Campbell on this very runway last week so it’s awesome to be on the actual catwalk."
 
That done, it was time to start the show. I dashed back into the room, down the side of the runway and to the photographer's area. Miraculously, although there were now around ten other photographers, nobody had nabbed my spot. There was just time to change lenses then the show began. I must admit to loving shooting catwalk shows. The pumping music really gets the adrenalin going, which is a good job really as it does require you to be highly reactive and catch the models just under the right light, at the right point in their walk or turn.

 
London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.

Talking of light, it may surprise you to learn, if you’ve never done this kind of thing, that the light is quite bright, unlike shooting at a gig or  during a theatre production. I only had to push the ISO up to 500 to get a good exposure at 1/250th (to freeze motion) and f/5.6 (to give myself a little leeway with focusing on a moving object).

The show included this season’s make-up and hair looks, the ‘big shoulder’ trend (please, I still shudder at pictures of me from the 80s) and pretty prints, in addition to the extravagantly bejewelled creations by Manish Arora and the more wearable Jaeger.

Catwalk show over all too soon, I shot people enjoying the Elizabeth Arden demonstration and shoppers at both Somerset House and 180 The Strand, the overspill venue.

Shoot over, the job had now just begun. I spent all of Saturday night editing and processing. I submitted a selection to the nationals around 11pm, and was up at 6:30am on Sunday to carry on emailing the relevant women’s magazines to see if they were interested in the pictures, resizing for ePHOTOzine and emailing Louise’s pictures to her and the producer.
 
I am happy to report that Louise was very pleased with the pictures, as she responded almost immediately. And I am very pleased with myself for being in the right place at the right time!
London Fashion Weekend London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
London Fashion Weekend.
Photo by Jane Hobson.
 
Words and pictures by Jane Hobson.

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Comments


shaks 12 561 1 Tokelau
29 Sep 2009 1:22PM
Excellent article and congrats on those stunning pics.

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User_Removed 7 736 4
29 Sep 2009 3:20PM

Quote:Excellent article and congrats on those stunning pics.


Thank you!
webjam 10 292 11 Netherlands
12 Nov 2009 8:14PM
Good read and terrific images! Hope you got some accepted by the women's magazines too.

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