Monday, 31 October 2011

Hello Du-Bye

I touched down in Dubai at around midnight for a Hackett shop opening party the following evening, and the oppressive heat and humidity hit me immediately. Fortunately, the hotel had laid on a limousine into which I scrambled with much relief. The driver deftly handed me a tray laid out with an ice cold towel and chilled energy drink that had been secreted in a fridge under the front passenger seat. It was most welcome and unexpected.

Slumped in the back seat, I was transported quietly and swiftly along vast deserted highways that cut through fantastically shaped skyscrapers. I passed the tallest building in the world, which reminded me of a silver propelling pencil, and a brace of towers that resembled segments of an orange. The people of the United Arab Emirates have carved a skyline from the desert which will become as recognisable as New York or London.

At the hotel my luggage was received with some puzzlement. Was that it? One bag? Indeed it was - I have finally learned how to travel light. I now cram as much as I can into one holdall, in order for it to fit in the overhead locker. Of course, my suits look as though I have slept in them for a week, but with a pressing service available at the hotel it is preferable to hanging around and waiting interminably for the luggage to appear off a halfhearted carousel.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Photo Opportunity: Autumn/Winter 2011

I like taking photographs, and going on a Hackett photo shoot gives me the opportunity to take some snaps whilst endeavouring to keep clear of the official snapper. Located in this blog is a slideshow selection of my pictures taken when we shot this Autumn's brochure.

It never ceases to amaze me what a production it is to muster together thirty to forty photographs to make into the brochure - I can't imagine the numbers required when making a movie. For starters there is the photographer, lighting assistant, computer technician, film maker plus assistant and some poor guy straight out of college who has to lug all the equipment around.

Then you have the models - a couple of boys and a wafer thin girl who all need to have hair and makeup - which means there are hairdressers and their assistants. Someone has to take care of wardrobe which involves needing a seamstress and assistant, and of course you need a stylist to put the clothes together, with an assistant to add the finishing touches to an ensemble.

None of this would be possible without a production team who are tasked with getting everyone to the locations, which in this case meant the countryside one day, London the next and the following day Switzerland (which I sadly missed). There's also the job of keeping them fed and watered which entails the necessity of van drivers and catering crew, and a chap who looks after all the props - naturally with his assistant.

Mysteriously, around lunchtime the numbers seem to increase even more, but I generally have no idea who they are or what they do. I have decided that next year I too shall have an assistant, as it seem to be the must-have accessory.

After all I need someone to take off the lens cover.