I love this Crystal Renn opulent but very sensual fashion editorial for Germany’s Brigitte, who says that will use real people in fashion editorials going forward. Crystal Renn is real but also a model, appearing in the January V Magazine survey of models in all sizes.
So often fashion photos are very superficial, presenting clothes after all, with no real interest in drawing us into the mood of the woman. We might assume that the darkness, the rich fabrics and rich interior make Crystal Renn appear so sensual in these photos.
The props contribute to mood, of course, but the relationship between Crystal and photographer Keith Schofield is one in which Schofield gains artistic access to Renn the woman, crawling into her essence some how.
This is the gift of a photographer who penetrates her/his subjects to unearth something about their essence that goes beyond the clothes they’re wearing. My sense of that the photographer must get beyond herself (get out of his ego) in order to capture the personality or beauty of the model, celebrity or real you and me.
At this moment, the photographer becomes art, not just a snapshot photo, however perfectly composed. This last photo (there are still more at Brigette) fascinates me in particular because Crystal Renn’s beauty is captured with a certain self awareness, as a woman who has made her own choices and is at peace with herself.
Hers is an amazing state of being (in this case a size 12 model and not the emaciated woman that she was) for a comparatively young woman at age 26. A confident self acceptance runs throughout this entire set of photos, and they are beautifully inspirational to all women.
The gift comes from Schofield, not only Renn.
If these comments interest you, then enjoy my discussion of a photographer, Terry Richardson, who I believe rarely leaves his own ego to capture any subjective dimension of his subjects. He’s the voyeur from afar but never intimately connected with the person inside his lens— who is preferably photographed Barbie style.
I contrast Richardson’s photographic skills with Annie Liebovitz’s, photographing the same woman January Jones.
Back to Crystal Renn. See her now photographed by Terry Richardson for this month’s V Magazine.
I like the layout of photographing Crystal against a much thinner Jacquelyn Jablonsky. Jezebel found the approach competitive between the women, and almost implied that Jablonsky won the day (link in article). I don’t see the setup as a female competition, but you may not like the editorial perspective.
If you’re not fashioned out by now, watch the Brigette Crystal Renn/ video, translated into German, but it’s always fun to watch beauty in action and the second ‘curvy’ layout from V Magazine (some nudity). Anne