MA Fashion Photography explores the rhetoric of fashion photographic production and contextualises theory and practice within fine art, popular culture and mass media. Through photographic practice, you will examine social, cultural and critical issues involved in the practice of fashion photography and the impact and construction of the fashion image as a spectacle. In broad terms, it is a multidisciplinary framework for independent study leading to an original body of photographic or written work proposed and negotiated by you.
The nature of the MA in Fashion Photography relates directly to its philosophy and structure and remains based essentially on practice, as opposed to theory. Four terms in length, it is divided almost equally between a structured programme of Visual Seminars and Work Reviews, in the first half of the course, and a more free and personal exploration of the subject and its attendant influences from Cinema, Fine Art, Psychology and Semiology, in the second. For these reasons alone, a great emphasis is placed not only upon the photograph itself but also with the thought processes that came to form it. This in turn encourages a personal mode of working going towards informing a final body of work that forms both your major project and ultimately your final public exhibition.
A young course, it is singular in its character and is currently the only one of its kind in Europe. It is located at the heart of London’s Fashion area, and within easy reach of some of the finest galleries in the world. Both of these realities furnish the course with its unique character and mirror the society within which we live.
What will I be doing?
As a student on the MA Fashion Photography, a combination of theoretical and practical study will lead you to a self-negotiated project or final written dissertation. Individual units will consider the context in which the fashion photograph is seen, and the constructed spectacle of the fashion image.
Fashion Spectacle examines and critically reflects on the nature and construction of the staged moment and the communication of narrative through styling, lighting, location and art direction. Project work will create a fashion image through to post-production. Visual Strategies provides a framework in which photographic practice is discussed, directed and supported. Semiotic analysis is applied to the fashion photographic image. The context in which the fashion image appears - gallery/museum/fashion magazine/online - and the transience of the fashion image are examined. The Fashion Catalyst is an inspirational unit including a wide range of visiting professionals and practitioners talking about their work - art directors, photographers, film director, show producer (theatre/catwalk). It gives an overview of potential roles and future development. In Future Chic students identify issues around the power and influence of the fashion photographic image and develop their personal photographic practice. The unit is designed to function as an incubator for ideas or the major project development.