Are fashion bloggers killing the big-time glossies?
Here's a look at Scott Schuman, The Sartorialist, the street style fashion blogger if you didn't already know:
Did the advent of blogs and street style photographers kill the relevance of the big-time glossies?
Maybe it's cause I'm old(er), I like the hiss on a record (The Libertines), I like the artistic hit or miss of an indie film (less and less of these accessible nowadays) where mistakes can be made, but because there is less money at stake, a chance can be taken on creativity.
It's nice to have a different viewpoint and one not calculated on earning the big bucks. Otherwise, it all starts to look like one big commercial for something.
In terms of fashion mags, I've always been inspired by photography in the major glossies, but my eye has come to tire of the over-photoshopped. And although I have an appreciation for over-the-top photo shoots, I've come to love the work of street photographers/blogs like The Sartorialist by Scott Schuman, Garance Dore, Bill Cunningham for The New York Times, and Style from Tokyo by Rei Shiito, to name a few.
In fact, I think that over the years, I've come to prefer it. I still love magazines but I will tend to spend money on something with less big-time advertising (and Hollywood stars on the cover) and a little more on mags with thought-provoking content, whether visual or print. It's great to see how real people translate or make trends and go for styles their own way. And it's nice to read something without feeling bombarded to buy a product.
Otherwise, let's face it, you're looking at an advert for a starlet's upcoming film or television project. That's been done to death and seriously, what could be more boring? How many more articles do we need on Rihanna, Lindsay Lohan, or even Angelina Jolie? Plus, aren't there specific magazines that cater to their particular talents to flog their latest venture? (Obviously there are.)
The street fashion bloggers I mentioned are well respected photographers with an eye for the unconventional or just plain old good and/or garish taste. And I love to see fashion "mistakes." It's where the most creative happens and trends are born!
Also, the fashion on the street they capture is a mix of hi-low, creative or simple dress. It's interesting to see real people wearing Gap, Zara, vintage or borrowed - all their own way - alongside those who can afford dreamy, high-end designer gear.
This is where you also tend to see yes, the very young with fit bodies along with "real" people - older, bigger, athletic, whatever. On Schuman's site in particular, there is a reflection of the diversity that is part of New York City (and other big city hot spots.) It's a nice change and one that never gets focus in the big guns.
And there's no "such and such designer is placing a big ad, therefore we have to do a spread of their clothes." It's a documentation of what people choose to wear on their own and in a mix particular to them.
It's interesting in a way that fashion glossies cannot afford to be, I think.
Listen, I know Schuman and Dore have both become fashion world darlings and even work for the big advertisers and glossies (they are talented and have multiple platforms for their work), as well as doing their blogs. Schuman in particular has a background in the fashion business and comes by "his eye" very honestly. He's worked in the industry for years.
But it's through The Sartorialist that he has the freedom to be a kind of independent street fashion curator, highlighting the detail and joy of personal style. There's a democratization of sorts that is conveyed and why I think his blog is such a success.
Like really good indie film, he presents an idea and leaves the rest up to the audience. Something the mainstream glossies can no longer do, given their reliance on the advertising fashion conglomerates on which they depend.
Fashion bloggers, glossies, pinterest: where do you go to get your fashion fix?