Sunday, October 23, 2016

Dwi Handayani Syah Putri, Jakarta Fashion Week

Day Two of Jakarta Fashion Week. Today, the street style photographers finally came out. All three of them. One, Bode, was a photographer shooting for fun. He developed his street style chops at Sydney Fashion Week, when he was doing he was degree there. Another, Erick, shoots street style pics for, the outfit of the day website he launched a few years back. And the other, Kaymori, used to shoot street style for Indonesia, when it was still a thing. Now he mostly does make up styling and wedding shoots, but he is still fanning a flame for street style. The four of us hung out at the crosswalk connecting the fashion tent to the mall, Senayan City, trying to get candid shots of Indonesian style icons getting out of their cars or crossing the street. It didn't work out too well. For one thing, there were way too many people and cars, and the crosswalk was narrow. It was close to impossible to get a clean shot. For another, it was cloudy and dark. It rains everyday in Jakarta, often for hours at a time, and there is a gloomy haze that hangs over the city from palm plantation fires that burn incessantly on the neighboring island of Sumatra (Don't buy palm oil!). I had to shoot at ISO1000 to get usable pics. But I am unlikely to post many of them, since they're so terrible. Finally, people just aren't used to having cameras snapped at them as they enter fashion events. Even the local celebrities seem unsure of what to do when it happens. They look down, or smile awkwardly, or hide their faces. Posing while walking is a tricky thing to master. It takes practice, a certain kind of bodily discipline. The attendees at New York Fashion Week have so mastered it, it hadn't occurred to me that people here wouldn't have.

The only good pics I got yesterday were those I got when I stopped people and asked for their photographs. That's what I'm going to have to do today too. Indonesia has a big blogger community. And some of their top names, like Dwi Handayani Syah Putri, have hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions, of followers. In particular, it's got an awesome hijaber blogger scene. Those girls are fierce! And seriously stylish.

Jakarta Fashion Week has yet to become the circus of New York, London, Milan, and Paris. But it's working on it. It's got the spectacle. It's got the talent. But it has yet to generate the same social media hype machine as the big four. Yet. Post show, the bloggers search the premises for good spots to do their outfit posts. Mid-show, they pull out their iPhones and SnapChat the thing like any good blogger anywhere. And in line for the shows (I've been to just two so far, but am going to a couple more today) they take an insane number of selfies. It is an exercise in futility to avoid ending up in the background of other peoples' shots. I tried anyway. Unlike the people I photograph, self-promotion does not come naturally to me.    

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Diana Rikasari and Acha Sinaga, Jakarta Fashion Week

Today was day one at Jakarta Fashion Week, Southeast Asia's largest annual fashion event. This is my first time shooting it. Although I've been to Jakarta a number of times for previous projects and have something of a working knowledge of Indonesian fashion celebrities (I once reached out to Diana Rikasari for an interview on a project I did on Indonesian fashion bloggers), I had no idea what to expect. The event takes place in a tent outside Senayan City, one of Jakarta's most upscale malls. Press conferences happen on the first floor of the mall, and photographers, models, editors, and buyers seem to move continuously between the venue and the mall. It was a hazy day, beset with the occasional tropical rain storm. Cars streamed through the parking lot, and the spaces to shoot were few and far between: a narrow pathway from the front entrance to the backstage, walkways in front of the mall itself, a crosswalk or two between the mall and the venue. It was hot (around 90 degrees), muggy and sticky. Perhaps, then, it shouldn't have been a surprise that I was the only street style photographer out there. Sure, I saw a few dudes lingering near crosswalks with DSLRs, but they didn't seem to be shooting anyone. In the absence of the fashion paparazzi, local fashion influencers like these two brought their own photographers. Or at least their iPhones. 

I will be reporting from Jakarta Fashion Week throughout the week. Next week I will be reporting on Singapore Fashion Week. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Sarah Ellen, outside Dion Lee, Pier 59, New York

Sunday, October 16, 2016

White Jumpsuit, outside Jeremy Scott

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Outside Jeremy Scott, 33rd St, New York

Monday, October 10, 2016

Outside Lacoste, Varick St, New York

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Outside Pyer Moss, 15th St, New York

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Samantha Angelo, outside Jeremy Scott, 33rd St, New York

Monday, October 3, 2016

Outside Pyer Moss, 15th St, New York

Friday, September 30, 2016

Outside Pyer Moss, 15th St, New York