Street Style Photography and the Sartorialist

9 07 2010

by Miriam King

April 15th, Style Profile Romney Leader , NYC (c) Scott Schuman

May 13th Rolled Shorts NYC (c) Scott Schuman

In the last few years the rise of the internet has allowed street photographers to publish their photos instantly and reach a massive audience though their blogs. Scott Schuman aka The Sartorialist is one of the pioneers of this type of street style blogging. While the focus of Scott’s work is street style and fashion, his photographic style is reminiscent of Sander’s portraits, and he lists Sanders as one of his influences. They both have a similar objective style of photographing people. Both their work is about how people’s identity is expressed by what they wear, whether that is a uniform for a job, a well cut suit, a student wearing a quirky outfit or a fashion editor wearing a beautiful dress.

Oct 6th at Lanvin B&W hat (c) Scott Schuman

The Streetstyle blogging phenomenon has its roots in the Japanese street fashion Fruits magazines of the 90s, but the blogging platform now allowed photographers to publish their photos freely and reach a widespread audience. Scott Schuman started his blog in 2005 after leaving a job in fashion marketing, at first it was simply a hobby but it grew quickly into a fulltime job. Scott has now taken photographs for many major fashion magazines & in 2009 he published a book of his photographs. Thousands of street style blogs have sprung up in cities all over the world in the last 5 years, some are more photographically successful  than others but here are a few I’d recommend.

STOCKHOLM - intersection launch dinner & hornstull, 06/14-15/10 (c) Yvan Rodic

The Facehunter

Photographer Yvan Rodic, based in London but travels all over the world.

Yvan began his blog in 2006 & despite not having had a background in photography he has had his photos published in GQ, Elle & Vogue and is now working as a fulltime streetstyle photographer. He describes his style of photography as “between a pose and a snapshot. I mean it’s natural but a bit posed.” And he cites the photographer Rineke Dijekstra as the inspiration behind the simplicity of his photographic style. He also keeps a visual diary of his travels at

(c) Liisa Jokinen and Sampo Karjalainen


Photographers Liisa Jokinen and Sampo Karjalainen from Helsinki, Finland.

This is one of the longest running street style blogs, the pictures are taken in the streets and clubs of Helsinki from July 2005 onwards. The project is a tribute to Fruits and Street magazines, the pioneers of street fashion photography.

Stil in Berlin

Photographers Mary Scherpe and Dario Natale based in Berlin.

“Stil in Berlin” is an online photography project, published in blog- presenting a selection of contemporary Berlin street style. It was founded in March 2006.

All The Pretty Birds

Photographer Tamu McPherson from Milan.

Humans express their personalities through fashion. There are those who go along with the grain and those whose roots grow outside of the field. Wherever we fall on the fashion spectrum, we are all beautiful creatures. We are all pretty birds.


Photographers Andreas Schjønhaug and Eirik Slyngst, based in Oslo.

The Streethearts is a fashion web site aiming at showing what ordinary, well-dressed people wear in their everyday lives.

(c) Wayne Tippets

StreetStyle Aesthetic

Photographer Wayne Tippets in London.

Streetstyle from the point of view of a reportage photographer.

Vanessa Jackman

Photographer Vanessa Jackman in London.

Vanessa Jackman is an Australian lawyer turned photographer. She says “I take a thousand photographs every day – some in my head, some with my camera; I can’t imagine doing anything else with my life- I am totally and utterly in love with my camera and with the people and things I photograph”.

Fashion Filosofy © 2007-2009

And finally Fashion Filosofy & Dublin Streets get an honorary mention for being Irish!

– Miriam


Irving Penn – Small Trades by Miriam King

22 06 2010

"Seamstress Fitter," London, 1950 (c) Irving Penn

"Milkman," New York, 1951 (c) Irving Penn

August Sander’s objective style of photography was undoubtedly an influence on many future generations of photographers, including Irving Penn’s Small Trades project. Working in Paris, London and New York in the 1950s Penn photographed trades people wearing their work clothes and carrying the tools of their trade. He photographed them in the studios he used for his fashion photography, so that a neutral backdrop and natural light are the setting in which the trades-people pose with a sense of pride. Where as Sanders photographed his photographed his subjects in their environment, Penn photographs them in isolation, taking away all the distractions & focusing our attention on the person and their attire. These photos really seem to reveal something about the individual themselves, not just their job.

Coal Man London 1950 (c) Irving Penn

Commis-Larue Paris 1950 (c) Irving Penn

Penn shot these photos on a medium format camera using Tri-X film. He came back to this project repeatedly over several decades making both silver gelatin prints as well as platinum/palladium prints, which have a greater tonal range.

If you would like to know more about Irving Penn & his Small Trades project, here are some links:

Irving Penn Small Trades at the Getty Center

A Review of the Exhibition at

New York Times – “Getty Museum Acquires Penn Photographs”

Irving Penn on Wikipedia

Irving Penn on Masters of Photography

– Miriam

August Sander, The Father of Street Photography

17 06 2010

Painter (Anton Raderscheidt), 1926 (c) August Sander

Young Farmers on Sunday, 1926 (c) August Sander

In many ways August Sander is the father of street photography as we know it today. His great project Man of the Twentieth Century aimed to document the people and typologies of the area, near Cologne, where he lived. Sander declared “I am not concerned with providing commonplace photographs like those made in the finer large-scale studios of the city, but simple, natural portraits that show the subjects in an environment corresponding to their own individuality”.

Bricklayer (c) August Sander

He went out in to the streets and countryside on his bicycle, photographing the people he met.  He is best known for his full length portraits which not only describe the social role that people wanted to portray to the camera but also hint at the personality of the individual. He said “[w]e know that people are formed by the light and air, by their inherited traits, and their actions. We can tell from appearance the work someone does or does not do; we can read in his face whether he is happy or troubled”. His book Face of Our Time was published in 1929 but unfortunately when the Nazis came to power in the 1930s they banned his book and work, probably because his photographs showed a varied population which did not adhere to their Aryan ideals.

Circus Workers (c) August Sander

Country Girls (c) August Sander

For more on August Sander visit some of the following links:

August Sander on

August Sander at the Andrew Smith Gallery

August Sander at the Getty Center

Pastry Cook 1928 (c) August Sander

– Miriam