This is part II of my interview with photographer, Nigel Barker. He gives Style Solutions the scoop on his role during Fashion Week, model-turned bloggers, shooting America’s Next Top Model, upcoming projects and more!
S: Fashion Week is only two weeks away! Do photographers have a different perspective when watching a fashion show?
N: Some of our clients at Studio NB include fashion designers. I’ve worked with Pamella Roland for about 7 years and we handle everything from coming up with concepts to helping select models for her show. We also watch for looks to pull from the catwalk for editorials and celebrities, so it’s very much a work and fun kind of time.
S: How’s being a judge on America’s Next Top Model?
N: It feels amazing! I take it very seriously, but it’s also fun and I’ve made great friends along the way. The young girls who are there feel like their life is dependent on winning ANTM; it’s an enormous stepping stone for the young contestants. Judging is known to go on for hours, sometimes 8-9. We have to have a majority agreement on who stays and who goes. It’s a decision made just by the judges.
S: How does an ANTM photo shoot differ from an editorial?
N: They’re very different. We’re shooting for TV, so we (Tyra, myself, and others) pick shoots that we’ve had real life experience with and are particularly exciting and daring. We can’t play music during an ANTM shoot because of the audio, where on real shoots we blast music. Also, magazines tend to not have a big budget. ANTM is a huge production; over 100 of us travel internationally!
S: How has blogging helped models build their brand?
N: I think a lot of models have felt they had a job where they were only seen and not heard, so to have the ability to have a voice to get out real issues and problems, or even just to talk about their brand, is great. Look at Coco Racha-she has many humanitarian interests; going trips to Haiti, jewelry lines to help women and survivors from human trafficking and has taken blogging to heart. She uses her fame to highlight these issues through social networking. It’s brilliant.
S: What’s up and coming for you?
N: I’m working on several new books: a cook book with my mom, who people would know because she appeared on ANTM, a celebrity driven photography book called Raw about emotions and capturing the essence of people, and then one called Blossoming Beauty, which is a nude book featuring pregnant women. I’d love to make a fiction feature film and am talking to people and working with scripts for a major movie. I’m always excited about what’s next. I feel very lucky that I do what I love, but there’s still an enormous amount of opportunities out there.