Life might have slowed down thanks to coronavirus, but the busy world of fashion media still chugs on – despite the fact that models and photographers can't even be in the same room together. However, Essence magazine and Naomi Campbell came up with an ingenious solution to the COVID-19-induced problem, with Campbell shooting her own cover photo for Essence's front cover using her iPhone (opens in new tab).
As a highly experienced model and a fashion icon, it's hardly surprising that Naomi Campbell knows how to take a great photo. However, the news that she captured an entire cover photoshoot by herself using only an iPhone suggests two things. Firstly, phone-shot photos aren't just a flash-in-the-pan gimmick. And secondly, this might only be the first of many similar setups in our new post-coronavirus world.
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Naomi Campbell posted the Essence cover on her Twitter and commented (opens in new tab): "It was a very special honor and unusual experience for me to be able to shoot and style my own cover for Essence's 50th Anniversary Issue. While it was a sad reminder for me of all the people in media and production who are not able to work due to the coronavirus, it also brought me hope and encouragement to know that our people and infrastructures are resilient… We will come out of this stronger than ever."
On the eve of her 50th birthday, @NaomiCampbell covers our 50th Anniversary issue, shot by the icon herself with an iPhone while in isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tap the 🔗 for more on our May/June 2020 issue. #ESSENCE50 https://t.co/JluyvLQwha pic.twitter.com/ZrL7F9ka8MMay 5, 2020
There have been numerous magazine photoshoots, music videos and even a feature length film shot on iPhones over the past few years. Meanwhile, lockdown has even prompted creatively frustrated models and photographers to do FaceTime photoshoots. This shows just how potent camera phone technology has become – and how perfectly suited it is for the current situation we find ourselves in where even a simple photoshoot has become a health risk.
It's too early to tell how coronavirus will impact everyday life once the immediate crisis is over. However, with some e-commerce sites having clearly asked models to shoot their clothes at home (opens in new tab) and with even the most adventurous Instagram influencers having already adapted to capturing content in their living room, we do wonder what the photography landscape will look like once life returns to normal.
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