Q&A: With Fashion Blogger Joseph Kent
In the second part of our week long Fashion Week takeover, it’s now time to explore the online photographers that are making waves in the fashion industry, the bloggers.
If you want fast fashion at your fingertips then blogging is the direction to head for. No longer are the days when you have to wait for your beloved Vogue magazine to inform you about all the latest trends one month after Fashion Week, oh no, nowadays it’s all about the online fashion pack. Joseph Kent, journalism student, photographer and fashion blogger, speaks to Jessica Bracey about blogging during Fashion Week and shooting from the front row.
Name: Joseph Kent
Blog: Unlimited by JK
Is this your first time at London Fashion Week?
No this is actually my second. My first time was last September where I was going more for the novelty of it but this time it is actually to promote myself and get myself out there.
What is your blog Unlimited by JK about?
It’s a fashion blog so it’s a mixture of things such as personal style – not too much though as I prefer to be behind the lens instead of in front - street style, reviews, catwalk photography, costumes, anything that catches my eye really. Last Fashion Week I didn’t write that much to accompany the images, it was mainly visuals, but this time I’m stopping people and getting down as many details as possible, such as what they’re wearing and about the person themselves. This time I’m going to be doing more catwalk reports too.
What’s your motive for setting up the blog?
I suppose I want to be a little bit famous, not TV star famous but recognised in a certain community whether that’s in fashion or photojournalism. One of my goals at the moment is to get into the Burberry show, if I can get into that then it’s mission complete. Not saying that I would quit altogether then, but that’s the dream show to go to.
What sort of blogs are you reading at the moment?
I read loads! For street style I go to The Sartorialist, Street Peeper, Fashionista and also personal style blogs. There’s some Italian ones which are really good such as The Blonde Salad, The Fashion Fruit and The Three F who is actually a Dutch blogger/photographer who I’m trying to meet up with in London. I’ve met up with other bloggers which is a great way to network with like-minded photographers and draw in more traffic, plus you get to meet really lovely people. When I went to the Bristol one the girls were so nice, I was a bit intimidated being the only male blogger there, but people actually knew who I was which was great.
Traditionally the fashion media is newspapers and magazines but online blogging is huge at the moment, why do you think that is?
Everything on the internet is free and anyone who wants to blog can do it. People online love taking photos and writing. There’s a lot of opportunity and scope for it online. It’s a good platform to get your work out there if you’re not a professional photographer or journalist.
What sort of subject matter are you looking to shoot at Fashion Week?
I like doing street style photography so anyone that catches my eye, which is pretty much everyone. If you go to Somerset House (the hub of London Fashion Week) there is too much style and everyone is taking photos of everyone. I like going to shows and shooting the catwalks, but more than anything I want to practice my photography skills. I’m attracted to colour and the way people accessorise their outfits, especially if they’re carrying a camera.
How is it approaching people for street style shots?
Usually most people are ok, I’ve only had about three rejections where two of them were from a different country and the other was in Bournemouth, which I got quite upset about afterwards. This women who had an amazing outfit on with black leather and aviators, just said blankly ‘no’ in a very blunt way when I asked to take her picture, which kind of hurt my feelings. Most people are fine with it. At Fashion Week I can just say ‘Hi, can I take a photo of you for my blog?’, otherwise I would say ‘Hi, this may sound strange but I really like your outfit and it would be great to take a photo of you for my fashion blog?’ and then hand them my business card.
What’s been your experience at Fashion Week so far?
I went to see Francesca Morotta and it was a pretty good show, I managed to get front row which meant I got a free goody bag, but the collection was gorgeous. A lot of black but with reds and florescent colours thrown in too. Sitting in front row is brilliant for taking pictures too because obviously you don’t have anyone in the way.
What sort of gear do you use for fashion week?
Currently I’ve got a Sony Alpha 290 but I’ve got a Pentax lens on it fitted with an adapter, which I got on eBay for about £50. It’s got an aperture of f/2.8 and is a zoom lens. I love this lens because it produces a beautiful shallow depth-of-field which is great for Fashion Week as it pulls all the attention onto the outfit whilst resulting in pin-sharp images. I just want to experiment this time around and better my skills in the fashion environment.
What’s the process from taking the pictures at Fashion Week to uploading them online?
When it comes to street style I would usually take the photo and upload it on the same day. But because there are loads of people taking photos of so many people I’ll do it gradually over time so that the blog isn’t inundated and it’s a constant flow of images. I don’t know how long it’s going to take to upload them all and I don’t want to be publishing them as a bulk of photos.
I’ve seen that compared to years ago when it was all about getting the image right, nowadays it seems that speed to get them online is more important. What’s your opinion on this?
I wouldn’t want to upload a photo really late like in a month’s time if it was taken at Fashion Week, but for me it doesn’t have to go up straight away, I would prefer to make sure that the image is of a high quality and is relevant.
Joseph Kent is attending London Fashion Week AW2013 and will be upping his coverage as well as producing a documentary.
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