Watch: Tim Blanks Talk About How Street Style Photography "Doesn't Make Gods, It Makes Monsters"
The god of all fashion journalists weighs in on the phenomenon.
When Bill Cunningham started taking street style photos in the 70s before street style was even a thing, he probably never imagined that it would turn into what it is today. In a documentary by Garage magazine, Tim Blanks — the god of all fashion journalists — analyses and intellectualises the phenomenon in a way that only Tim Blanks could.
Sir Blanks (who we inteviewed for Oyster #98) draws on his own extensive experience in the industry to trace the genealogy of the street style photographer, talking about the beginnings of backstage photography in the late 80s to the rise of the supermodel in the 90s. While he initially found street style photographers "charming," this season he just thought "oh, enough."
"It's part of reality TV; there's no secrets anymore because of Facebook and stuff like that. It's a world where everything is on display the whole time," Tim says. "It's empowering in the way that reality TV has been empowering... It makes monsters. It doesn't make gods, it makes monsters."
"I've heard all sorts of stories about what people would do to get photographed by Tommy... I just get so embarrassed for them," Tim says, as we see ridiculous footage of a horde of photographers surrounding Anna Dello Russo as she paces around in circles to allow them to get an action shot. "The other hilarious thing is bloggers taking photos of each other which I find endlessly amusing." Us too, Tim blanks, us too.
"It's this funny thing; do these people crave to be part of this phenomenon is there some kind of use for the material that they're creating? It's just something that I don't know." We can't claim to know the answer either, but with MBFWA Australia just around the corner we're going to have a lot of time to undertake some 'research'.