Insights • Inspirations • Destinations • Design

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Classic Photo Shoots: Chanel, LV, Lilly and Ralph

There are some photo shoots that you remember long after the advertising campaigns they were in have come and gone. These are the shoots that mix fashion with whimsy and humour, and style with sassiness and cute street scenes. They're the shoots that Grace Coddington could have directed, with Rodney Smith standing behind the camera. They're the shoots that show a life we often wished we led.  Here are some extraordinary photo shoots that stand out from the rest.

I have featured some of these before, almost a year ago, but I hope you'll forgive me. It's 5am and I'm off to pick up my parents from the airport. My mother has had a bad accident in Hanoi and is being repatriated back to Australia. She's an extraordinary woman, and I'm quietly upset to think that she's had to end a lifetime of intrepid travel and adventure like this. If you haven't hugged your mother this morning, or this week, do think about it. Tell them how wonderful they are. Tell them you love them.

In the meantime, he is some inspiration from another brilliant mum – the immensely talented Kate Spade.

Kate Spade's photo shoot for the Fall/Winter 2009/2010 and other incredibly creative and memorable ad campaigns over the years. The balloon with the polka dots was an inspired idea. The company was certainly a leader in marketing until the Spades sold it and a little of the magic and talent was sadly lost. (Top image is also from a Kate Spade photo shoot.)

Lilly Pulitzer. The queen of bright colour, bold patterns and cheeky wit.

A photo shoot for the Chanel ad campaign for S/S 2011. Love the flirty pink dress, the setting and the delicacy of the table set for high tea. This ad was a change for Chanel. Normally Karl likes his ads darker, moodier, more Gothic in tone

A Chanel ad campaign from 1958. © Lillian Bassman: Anne-Saint Marie, NY. {Image via}

A photo shoot by GANT, shot by Michael Bastion, for ad campaign for the S/S 2011 collection. GANT never fail to do fabulous ads. I always try and grab a copy of the GANT magazine whenever I'm near one of the stores. They're full of inspiring photography and great articles. It's marketing dressed up as a magazine.

One of the photo shoots for Louis Vuitton’s spectacular celebrity-focused ad campaign. This one features filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola and his daughter Sofia sitting in the sun-kissed countryside of Buenos Aires. The image was shot by Annie Leibovitz. The Louis Vuitton bag is almost overshadowed by this father-and-daughter duo. I'm not sure why Annie Leibovitz and Louis Vuitton took them to Argentina? To me, the Coppolas are always associated with the Napa Valley and Paris, where they have a second home. I think LV should have shot them in Paris or Napa. But that's just my humble little opinion. And what would I know, compared to LV's chiefs?!

Ralph Lauren always shoots great ad campaigns. The 2001 ad campaign with Penelope Cruz was spectacularly glamorous. The collage was an inside front cover for Town and Country magazine. Such a beautiful collage of glamorous images. It doesn't even looked staged, thanks to the delightfully haphazard way the images have been placed in the design. It looks more like Penelope's summer photo album.


  1. All of these photos are so fun to look at!

  2. You educate my eye.

    I would pay you for that.

    XO T

  3. Re LV Ad and Buenos Aires why do photo shoots go to amazing places only to show us backgrounds that could of been taken anywhere? I know not all but the LV could be anywhere couldn't it? it to associate an interesting place with the product ?

    Talking of images wasn"t "Marie Antoinette" a pastiche of pastels and patisserie?

    As for Anne St Marie ...I love her, I always prefer to see models than actors for fashion, although Magdalena Frackowiak's pose looks weird in the Lauren ad..but are the dresses ..(gasp).. velvet? if so love them too


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