On October 26, Scott Schuman made his way to DC for a signing of his current book Closer , a collection of his street-style photographic work.
Ask anyone interested in fashion who Scott Schuman is and you're met with wide eyes and exclamations of "ooooh I LOVE him!" And it's not that hard to understand the enthusiasm; Scott Schuman, also known as The Sartorialist, is one of the most widely known fashion photographers/bloggers in the world today. His work has been featured in GQ, Vogue Italia, Vogue Paris, Interview, and he currently has a webseries for AOL On. His fame is well-deserved; his images are always beautiful, thought-provoking, and inspirational.
So it comes as no surprise that when it was known that The Sartorialist himself was coming to DC for a Q&A as well as a book signing, people were more than just a little excited.
Held at Monroe Street Market on a sunny (and chilly!) Saturday afternoon, the signing was the feature of the Arts Walk festival. There was live music and a variety of food trucks for guests to sample from, and artists had work set within the surrounding buildings along the walk that ranged from paintings to sculptural work.
The Q&A session was definitely a highlight of the event. Schuman answered questions thoughtfully and honestly, and it was great to hear how he works, how he views the world through his photography. As a photographer, I found myself nodding along in agreement to everything he was saying. It was very cool, and surprising, to hear that we actually shared similar philosophies when it comes to how and why we shoot, and our vision for our photography.
There was so much I took away from his answers, but here are some of the high points:
- Always be sincere in your work and vision, capture what attracts you about the subject and focus in on that.
- Be in the moment and tune everything else out.
- It's not about capturing high-end fashion; he sees a lot of well-dressed and fashionable people but that doesn't mean he is going to take their pic. He's looking for something about their outfit, something about the lines, where they are standing, how the lighting is, and more.
And Schuman doesn't just say it, he lives it; at the event he was wearing a tailored Italian jacket and shirt with Gap jeans, the perfect blend of high and low fashion. Who doesn't love that?
It was such a surreal pleasure to meet Schuman, who's career I have been following for years. Getting him to sign my hardcover copy of Closer and talk a little bit about the images was another highlight. Hopefully he'll be back in DC soon and get some shots of the fashion scene here; we may not be New York or Paris, but we have our own style identity :)
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