• 15th June 2019

Inspiration by Edward Steichen – a Vogue cover.

Beach ball model

Vogue or BR Southern Railways?

I am determined to make it feel like summer, here in Devon, south west England!

This image was inspired by a 1930’s Vogue cover. To be precise the inspiration came from the first Vogue photographic cover ever, shot by Edward Steichen. July 1st 1932 edition. The pose is very loosely based on Steichen’s original.

Interestingly, the image was seen purely as a cover design and had absolutely no fashion credits or content text at all. A trend that lasted till about December 1939, with a few exceptions after that.  At the time Steichen was regarded as the most well known and highest paid photographer in the world, working for Conde Naste, Vanity Fair as well as Vogue. He is also regarded as having shot the first modern set of fashion photographs in 1911 for ‘Art et Decoration‘ magazine – a series of gowns by  couturier Paul Poiret.

I think I feel the start of a project coming on here, as I really enjoyed recreating the feel of this shot. Need to find a willing model! If you are starting out in photography as a career you can learn a lot from the lighting of the ‘old masters’. This style of lighting didn’t change for many years – I can remember BR southern railways having a similar style for their carriage posters way into the 60’s. Best to stop now – I am showing my age!

All images © John Russell 2012


About John Russell

With 40 years in the business, John is an highly experienced commercial photographer. Specialising not only in all forms of studio work but also location and food. He has worked with many well known advertising agencies, both in London and the west country. His direct clients include many well known brands as well as aspiring business start ups.
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  • All images © John Russell Photography 2015. All rights Reserved