Sometimes I feel vaguely guilty for taking pictures in front of churches. Like I’m exploiting other people’s sacral lifeblood for my own aesthetic reasons. I genuinely believe that spirituality is open-source, that adding a little of it to an artistic endeavor never hurt anyone, but…others don’t necessarily know I’ve thought that far ahead. I don’t want to look like just some basic bitch taking church selfies.
But? If you’re gonna take outfit pictures in public, strangers’ reactions are kind of the last thing you should be caring about.
On that note, though, I’ve become increasingly aware recently of how outfit pictures are perceived outside of the fashion blogosphere. I know perfectly well that they’re considered narcissism barely disguised as art. And that nags at me sometimes when I take photos in public: is this just vanity? I don’t think so. I really don’t. I love photographing the human form, especially the artistically clothed one. I’m around me 24/7; it’s just plain more practical to experiment on myself than to enlist other models. And I’m also fundamentally a creative loner: I find it difficult to communicate my ideas to others and open them for amendment. Controlling every aspect of a shoot myself is usually more satisfying to me.
Not only that, but using yourself as a model when you fall so considerably outside the range of acceptable mainstream models can be really powerful. Now, I’m not a “personal is political” kind of person, and I’m not a big fan of throwing “fuck you”s in people’s faces…but I do think fashion blogging is awesome in part because of how democratic it is. May the best outfits win. I follow bloggers of so many sizes and colors and genders, and I love that I can do that.
It’s not gonna change the world. But it might help change my little corner of it.