One of the attractions of the Fashion Management course is the opportunities it provides, particularly in third year. With the choice to do a full year, 12 weeks or a 6 week placement, I chose to do the latter as it meant I could come back for the remainder of second term to work on the Digital Fashion Show.
With technology being an ever-increasing part of fashion, either as a form of marketing, or within the clothing itself, the Fashion Management course has adapted to these changes, allowing us as students to gain industry desired experience producing our own fashion film.
During the first two weeks, we received an intense crash course in filming and editing using professional Sony and Canon cameras as well as the industry used software, Final Cut Pro. Under the guidance of ABS Media Team’s MAC Learning Technologist, Jen BirtlesKelman and Fashion Management lectures, Nichola Strachan, Karen Cross and Fiona Blunsdon we set about coming up with ideas, putting deadlines in place and designating roles.
Working with the theme “Fashion is Creative. Fashion is Culture. Fashion is Business.”, we explored the meaning of fashion. There was a real mix of ideas when brainstorming, with fashion being a form of art, an expression of ourselves and a crucial worldwide industry. Fashion is no one definition; some may say it was undefined… See what we did there! A huge inspiration for us was the Adidas Originals advert which is extremely fast paced and edgy like how we wanted our film. After splitting the theme into three and brainstorming as a team of nineteen, we divided up into smaller groups to work on each area.
My main role was the marketing of the film which I felt was the most relevant area to my future career. This was the best thing about the film because it was student led and we could play to our strengths while learning new skills in filming and editing. Across the Fashion Management social media platforms, myself and fellow course mate, Alison Smith, thoroughly enjoyed sharing exclusive behind the scenes shots. Each week, we also wrote a behind the scenes blog post for “The Fashion Place” as well as a post called “Fashion for Five“. This was a lovely way to introduce each team member by getting them to answer five fashion related questions. I loved reading the fashion fails!
The highlight, however, was helping out on one of the creative shoots. The shoot was inspired by the Indian festival Holi and the spray-painted dress part of Alexander McQueen’s 1999 Spring/Summer collection. The end results looked incredible! Sarah Snedden, our beautiful model and fellow course mate, did a brilliant job of enduring the powder paint we pelted at her. Other creative shoots included experimenting with shadows, borrowing clothing from Gray’s School of Art in order to explore the movement of dance as well as utilising our new editing skills to blend a piece of classical art into a modern shot.
Meanwhile, the culture shoots focused on heritage and subculture, primarily in the form of grunge and pop. For the heritage shoot we were fortunate to receive the support from designer Helen Ruth, whose beautiful scarfs completed this bright shoot. These visually bold culture shots took hours to edit with various graphics added to create the final result. I’ve certainly developed a respect and appreciation for those who edit film and television as so much work goes into every clip. Even when I created the trailer, for fifteen seconds of footage it took five hours to edit!
For the business shoots, we once again received the support from Premiere Productions, whose models did a fantastic job. With shoots inspired by professional and casual business wear as well as the Girl Boss phenomenon, there is a real sense of the way fashion can make you feel empowered. Another shoot also focused on the beginnings of a brand involving clips of Gray’s students at work building their business.
Overall the final film, which you can view above, has gained a highly positive response with all the effort and hard work paying off. To launch the film we held two events. One was a VIP screening for staff and press; the other the official launch at Revolution de Cuba. Both events were a great success and the perfect way to celebrate the end of our third year.
I would highly recommend those in future years to be part of the Digital Fashion Show. You’ll gain a fantastic range of experience – even in a 6 week period – which provides invaluable and relevant skills that will aid you in the evolving fashion world.