Monday, July 19, 2010

Crystal Renn critics

First I would like to say that, in my eyes, Crystal Renn is in great shape! Following the time I spent shooting her for the Fashion For Passion exhibition, people have asked me what she was like, and I've told them that Crystal Renn is not only incredibly energetic, pleasant, and fun to work with - but she is one of the best body movers I've ever shot. Crystal is a true professional and knows how to work her angles superbly well, which is exactly what I told Glamour Magazine in my recent interview with them.

Below are 6 untouched images of Crystal moving around, shifting hips, working chin angles, etc.

It's important to note that, if you watch her thigh, closest to the left side of the screen, as it shifts from a vertical position to a downward - there is a drastic change in body size. This is one of the most basic lessons, when studying either photography or film: lower angles give you a wider subject and the closest thing to the lens will look the largest. As I said in a previous interview, this series that I shot with Crystal was done from a higher angle and with a wider lens. The following is footage taken from the shoot, itself, to better illustrate these points.

In addition, I have included a "before and after" of the images I blogged a few weeks ago.

I want to reiterate that I feel Crystal looks amazing in both images and the minimal retouching that I did do - it's nothing you wouldn't see in any magazine today. There is nothing hidden about this.


Teer Wayde said...

The people who complained and went over board about these images no nothing about photography and its clear.

When I first saw these images I thought stunning, she looks amazing as always even in nothing but a tank.

I noticed the angle and the different lense (I'm a model not a photographer though).

Thank you for posting additional images its great to see a retort to the all the stupid rants about this.

We should love models and people due to their shape because its beautiful not just be cause she is skinny enough or not fat enough!

google_account3 said...

Many of the people who have supported Crystal Renn have done so because visibly full-figured women are almost completely excluded from much of the fashion industry (the magazines and the runway shows). She was their one and only representative in these spheres. They reacted with dismay because her weight loss means that she has sold out; that instead of changing fashion to accept larger bodies, fashion has changed HER to suit its own anorexic-loving tastes.

It is exactly analogous to the dismay that many African-Americans felt when, for many years, Michael Jackson was growing ever-lighter skinned. It seemed like he was turning his back on his own race and wanting to be more acceptable to prejudiced white audiences.

And think of it: Michael was only the most prominent of MANY black performers. Crystal, on the other hand, was the ONLY plus-size model representing fuller-figured women.

Surely the dismay of Crystal's former fans is understandable.

Or what if gay men were not represented anywhere in the media, except by one gay man, and then that gay man turned around and "went straight"? Surely this would dismay the gay community.

If anything, I'm surprised the reaction wasn't even greater. It's a complete betrayal by Crystal of her former supporters.

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Jen van der Vecht said...

As a fellow photographer, who edits images on a regular basis... I do not see any major manipulation to these images other than a boost in contrast... which will define angles and darken shadow areas.... Crystal looks thin even in the before images... these images were taken with wide lenses, which tend to distort.. but I believe that that was intentional.

Angie said...

Agreeing with Jen van der Vecht...Renn DOES already look thin in the before images which, in my opinion, is why there shouldn't have been additional thinning done to the images. Yes, the retouching is minimal and "nothing more than what any other magazine would do," but that doesn't make it a requirement. Photographs have been retouched since analog days, but with digital and photoshop I think some photographers forget that it doesn't have to be mandatory. Sometimes all you need is a high angle, wide lens, and lighting (in camera work) to get the body/image to look the way you want it to

Michelle said...

As soon as I saw the segment on Today, I emailed my boyfriend (a professional fashion photographer) and said, "that's not photoshop, that's a wide angle lens." As Teer said, those who complained obviously know nothing of photography. In regards to the photoshop that was done, it looks simply like an effort to correct an odd hip angle, or a baggy shirt issue. The before and after pictures obviously show that her size was not effected by the photoshop efforts.

My disappointment is in the "news" segment who obviously did not do a fair and balanced job of reporting this story. I have to assume that their very OWN video crews must have used the most favorable lighting and lens choices to portray them on TV... hmmmmmmmm.....

Anne said...

The rants aren't stupid, Teer Wayde. This issue is complex for American women and sensitivity is required -- to the extent that the viewer counts for anything in the photographer, model, editorial dialogue.

Today's spectacular David Sims photographs of Crystal Renn in French Vogue should be a lesson in just how different camera angles make a woman appear. I agree that you didn't photoshop Crystal Renn to death.

We must educate the viewer just how much control a photographer and editorial team have over how the body is projected in images. We women take everything so literally -- like the time I went out with a guy, thinking he was 6' tall. He showed up 5'4" and it was all the camera lens.

Teer Wayde said...

Each person can have their own opinion Anne.

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