Gretl is an Adelaide based photographer with over 7 years of experience in the fashion industry. After shooting the last few Twosisters The Label campaigns, we sat down with her to chat about all things fashion photography.
How did you start your career as a fashion photographer?
I used to be a graphic designer for a fashion label in Adelaide and they needed a photographer to shoot their products, so I stepped into that role and the rest is history!
What are the best and worst things about fashion photography?
The best is the amazing locations that I get to shoot in, and the worst is having to shoot in awful, windy and rainy weather.
What is the most challenging thing about shooting editorials?
It would probably be when we’re shooting samples that aren’t 100% accurate to the final product, which leaves me with a lot of editing to do post-production!
You shoot so many fashion editorials. How do you stay inspired?
I used to be really big into Tumblr, but these days, I use Pinterest and Instagram more. I’m always scrolling through Instagram looking for fresh ideas. There are a few photographers I really like who inspire me, Georges Antoni especially. So, I try to keep up to date with what they’re doing!
You work with a lot of fresh faces in Adelaide. Is it an intentional decision to work with new models?
Yeah, I love working with new faces because it gives me the opportunity to mould them into the type of models who I like to work with!
Can you walk us through the process of shooting a fashion editorial from start to finish?
Okay, so, to begin with, I’ll work collaboratively with clients to figure out the vibe of the shoot. From there, we’ll scout locations, put together mood boards and find additional imagery that I can shoot in that location and under the circumstances that we’re working in.
The night before, I prep for the shoot by getting all my gear ready and I’ve learned to always bring more than you need, just in case.
On shoot day, we’ll work out the best areas for lighting and colour accuracy. During the shoot, I’m working on posing the models and getting that right.
Once we’ve wrapped up the shoot, that’s when the editing starts. Editing encompasses everything from fixing imperfections on the model’s skin, to fixing details on the garment if the samples aren’t right. For example, if the dress doesn’t have the right buttons that they’ll be producing the final garment with, I go in to fix that during the editing process. Editing can take up to 10 minutes per images and then you times that by 200 images. Generally, it takes twice as long to edit the images as it does to shoot them.
After sending the images to clients, there’s always back and forth and I normally have to re-edit, especially garment colours, to ensure it’s as accurate as possible to the actual product.
Once the clients are happy with the images, then you get to see your work out in the real world! These days, I typically see my images on social media, but sometimes in print as well!
What is the longest shoot you’ve ever worked on?
16 hours, but that’s very very rare. For lookbook shoots, we’ll start at 6am and finish at 8pm, but honestly, it very rarely happens.
You have a ‘signature pose’ that a lot of your models do during shoots. How did this come about?
It’s not a ‘signature pose’ per se, but it’s what I pull out if I need to get something interesting happening on set and to see how else the model can push herself to move. I find that it also helps to relax the vibe, especially if I need them to try something that’s a little far out. So, getting them into this pose sets a precedent for getting them to move around, so it’s more a tactic than a signature pose if I’m being honest.
Can you tell us a funny story that happened while you were shooting?
We were shooting an Adelaide model who’s shot campaigns for the likes of Prada and Gucci. We were out scouting locations in the Yorke Peninsula and on our way back to the hotel, the truck broke down. All of us, including this stunning Gucci model, had to get out and push the truck back!
You often bring your little girl, Nola, along with you on set. Do you see her following in your footsteps?
No, she’s not like me. She’s more an in-front-of-the-camera girl!
Does it ever get old seeing your work on your client’s different platforms?
I don’t get as excited as I did when I first began, but it’s still a bit of a rush to see your images when you’re scrolling through your newsfeed.
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