I’m making a lot of decisions these days. What lens to invest in? Format or Squarespace? (I’m still not sure and they both have given me an extra two weeks to work on that decision). Should I invest in a portable studio that won’t work with Asian voltages or DIY my own? But more importantly: what am I wearing? These days, I’m no longer shooting personal projects. I’m shooting clients, or with them at least. So it’s not the usual me in stinky workout clothes, a pair of very ripped up boyfriend jeans, or my pajamas.
Cait wrote about her designer uniform this year, and I’ve only started to think about one of my own now. It all started when i found my back flat on the asphalt, in a shirt dress, legs crossed awkwardly so as not to expose myself to the citizens of Phnom Penh while I got the right shot. Clearly I hadn’t made the right closet choices that morning.
I’ve decided to look to some of my favourite lifestyle and fashion photographers on what they’re wearing. Namely Alice Gao and Bonnie Tsang (sadly, not related…to my knowledge). These women are at the top of their game, and while they are often behind the camera, they are also both stylistas in their own right (read up on their personal style here and here) . So I decided to scour the web (aka look into their closets).
So I can’t pull off this look. On me, white shirts are basically asking for stains. Coffee, life, Phnom Penh dust, the whole shebang. My go-to instead has always been a crisper, more polished version of the J. Crew popover…in blue. I’m particularly digging this one. And the perfect pair of black pants to go with.
At the end of the day, it’s still jeans and a t-shirt (in my usual case, a strappy tank top). And maybe a leather jacket to add some edge (which doesn’t necessarily work in Southeast Asia). But the feeling persists: clean, functional. Nothing too loud as to over power what you are taking photos of, but still sufficient to show off your personality.
So basically I know what I gotta do still: capsule wardrobe. More on that later.