Fashion Regenerated: Interview with Reece Edwards

Reece Edwards is a progressive fashion photographer, marrying the vintage aesthetic of film into his contemporary scenes. Each of his shoots regenerates new perspectives of the beauty of the models and fashion. He depicts their self-confidence and comfortability with ease, inspiring developed ways of approaching the modern fashion world.


NRG: Why have you chosen photography? What differentiates it from other mediums?


RE: I chose photography because I felt I was able to take full control of the whole process in creating an image. It enabled my inner voice to be expressed. I had always struggled to get out my notions of creativity to others when having to demonstrate in a presentation. When I was an artist in my college days, although I was able to draw very well there was something missing. It took me forever to figure out what they wanted. They wanted me to do something specific, but I did my own thing and it worked out well.


Rhiannon and Tate by Reece Edwards



NRG: Why do you create photographs?


RE: I create photographs because I want people to feel good, confident and leave my shoots with a good energy about them. I have had many clients say they want to build confidence and that’s it, that’s my aim for the shoot. I haven’t failed once. I am confident in what I do and I love the people in the photography industry. I have made a lot of friends along the way and I will never stop creating. I also create for my own sanity. I use photography as an outlet for my anxiety and depression. It gets those negative vibes out the way and sometimes I use my own situations as a narrative for a shoot.


NRG: Working with fashion photography, do you work towards the image the client wants or do you come up with your own image?


RE: Always come up with my own image. They are working with you because of your artistic ability and your creative asset. I always ask the models I work with a week before to create a mood-board of what they are aiming to get out of me aesthetically. I then put together my own direction and creative ability, keeping in mind what the client wants out of me. Although, during a shoot I do bounce ideas with the client, I make sure my shoot is fun and ensure they feel like they have known me for years. I had one girl called Lauren who was very nervous and shy. She had come out of her shell during the shoot because of my reassurance and comfortability of my presence. This enabled her to come up with ideas which I then put my own twist on and we had some amazing final results. Which is the image on the beach, holding her jumper laughing.


Lauren by Reece Edwards

NRG: What does your creative process look like?


RE: I would say this is like asking KFC for their seasoning recipe. Anyway. I am very selective with who I collaborate with or aim to work with. This isn’t anything personal to anyone what so ever. I am just very particular because I have a certain aesthetic I always aim for. My mum always mentions to me actually. “You should work with this person you need to show this and that.” Obviously, I don’t listen. Being autistic I have always done things my way, that doesn’t mean I don’t take in what others say I am just used to my way of working and if I were to change this I just wouldn’t feel comfortable. Again, I’m not saying I can’t adjust if I was to work with a fashion company because I wouldn’t be working for my own final outcome. I would be working for theirs. My creative process starts with selecting who I aim to create a series with, knowing what the client is wanting out of me, seeing how my aesthetic will work with their ideas. Upon meeting with the client, I love to get to know them for a good half hour, know all about them. I work with their personality and try to bring that out in a cinematic portrait. If I have a certain image in mind that I would like to create I will then put out a casting and choose the best person for the possible final outcome, I look online and around local areas for a location that will fit each shoot, I then think of the weather and equipment I’ll need for this. I think about every aspect. Clothing and location is most important in the creative process.

by Reece Edwards

NRG: Your photographs appear to have a grunge, raw and ready feel to them which set the photos further back than they are taken. Is this purposeful? Have you always resonated with a rather vintage aesthetic?


RE: This is 1000% purposeful. If I have the money and time to wait and develop I will use film, medium format or 35mm. To keep that aesthetic up and for the obvious reason, time management. I use digital a lot, it’s quicker. I aim to make the images appear to date further back than they are because I have always been inspired by the 80s and 90s. I just think the aesthetic of the vintage affect always pops and people tend to love the nostalgic feel to them. I haven’t always been in that vintage mindset. I explored other aesthetics before I nailed my own. I shot digital with clean, fashion editorial edits.

NRG: Who are your favourite artists and photographers? Do you take inspiration from them?

RE: My favourite photographers without a doubt have to be: Estevan Oriol, Harris Nukem, David Yarrow, Mario Testino, Richard Avedon and Helmut Newton. I most certainly take inspiration from them, all for their grind, their hard work and risks they have all taken to get to where they are. Harris is a young modern photographer, what a guy. Estevan is just a legend, watch his documentary on Netflix called ‘LA Originals’ then you’ll see why.

NRG: What is your favourite work that you have done?


RE: I wouldn’t say I have “favourite work” I love everything I create. I have images I love a little more than others but that would be due to the work ethic I put into it, the thought process and how the shoot felt on the day. If I had to name one image for the purpose of this question it would have to be with my friend Caitlin @caitw___ on Instagram. The image we shot in an arcade in Portsmouth. This is because that was the turning point for me in Portsmouth. That shoot got my name known with other models and photographers in Portsmouth.


Caitlin by Reece Edwards

NRG: Throughout your years of working with photography, what would you say is the most invaluable thing you have learnt?


RE: Difficult question. I wouldn’t say there isn’t anything that’s been invaluable because everything I have been told, researched and watched I have learnt from. One thing I will say though is, not every image has to have a narrative/theory behind it. It can just look nice and aesthetically pleasing.


You can see more of Reece's works here:

https://www.reeceedwardsphotography.com/

@reeceedws


Written by Emily Quli

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