image via [The Water Guy]
I am sometimes known for oversharing, but I do not believe that such a thing exists. Moodboarding is a fairly recent addiction of mine, and a great source of inspiration, unfortunately I can only share these with you guys because the other sources of my inspiration usually have to be experienced IRL. Here are the 3 mood boards that I used for the 3 photoshoots Muxima, Vicky Park and A Corner of The World. Enjoy the vibes!
“You’ll rarely find me set up in a soulless coffee chain. In fact the chains are usually geared toward getting people in and out fast. I prefer somewhere a little bit more chilled.”
Q. Where did your initial interest in fashion photography come from?
A. When it comes to photography, pretty much all the imagery I’ve been drawn to and found inspiration from has been fashion. I was a teenager in the 90s when the supermodels were everywhere so this probably had a major influence on me.
Q. Has living in East London had any impact on your career?
A. Well I’m a photographer and I have a beard, so it’s pretty much law that I live in East London right? I’m not sure how much of an impact it’s had on my career. I do love it though.
Q. What does an average day in your life entail?
A.. There’s no such thing as an average day. That’s one of the things I love so much. Variety is the spice of life after all!
Q. You spend a fair portion of your time on your laptop, editing, sending emails everyday Fashion Photographer things. Do you prefer to work from coffeeshops? Why?
A. I’ve had an office before and sometimes I’m more than happy to work from home. That being said, editing, answering emails and doing all of the boring admin stuff can be quite solitary, so being able to relocate to somewhere with other people helps keep me sane! Plus good coffee keeps me going!
Q. Have you ever been inspired by the interior surroundings of a coffee shop?
A. The atmosphere in a coffee shop certainly has an impact. You’ll rarely find me set up in a soulless coffee chain. In fact the chains are usually geared toward getting people in and out fast. I prefer somewhere a little bit more chilled.
Q. Do you think that coffee or coffee shop culture have any relevance in the Fashion world?
A. You only have to look at street style photography to see how much of a role coffee has in fashion. Even in movies like Devil Wears Prada, coffee makes a key appearance. That being said, I do think we’re now experimenting more with coffee. It’s definitely still the fashionable drink, but with so many variations, people can do it their way… much like fashion.
Q. Any tips for budding fashion photographers?
A. There are no secrets. Photograph what you like, the way you like, and then get as many people to see it as you can.
One of my favourite things about East London is the way it acts as a bridge between different cultures and communities. A Corner Of The World is a prime example of this, located on Bethnal Green Road, it has found its home nestled between traditional Asian tailors and cake shops. Your friendly glocal cafe doubling as a deli serving and selling all kinds of Portuguese and Spanish products
Inside the store you become cocooned into an atmosphere that is super friendly and colourful, as are the staff, whilst still being able to appreciate the liveliness of the graffiti and street art outside. There is a no nonsense approach to beverages, when I received my flat white I was not expecting that nutty goodness. It is an ideal place for people watching as it is directly on the outskirts of the busy-ness of Brick Lane and Shoreditch, yet able to dodge the negatives with distance. They embrace their environment one hundred percent and, disregarding the name, remind you that the world ain’t all that square.
Location: A Corner Of The World
253 Bethnal Green Rd, London E2 6DB
Model: Jasmine Lin
Creative Direction/Photography/Styling: Alia Wasfi
Cafes have been gracing our screens and providing some of the most iconic scenes in film and TV for a great deal of time.
Now, I understand that that might be slightly biased because directors and producers are not reliant on the interiors of coffee shops as backdrops.
One of the most memorable coffee houses on TV, Central Perk, which I had not actually thought of, was where the cultish following of Friends would see their fave personalities, I would say about 60 % of the time.
Aesthetic appeal has become a must for coffeeshops. Especially in East London where there are all kind of different vibes that appeal to various people for different reasons. The industrial minimalist, cozy clutter or even nostalgic in the form of 80’s diners.
I realize Victoria Park is not exactly a coffeeshop, but there is no scarcity in finding a great hot cup of joe in or around the park. Wherever you are, ten minutes in any direction and there you could be sippin’ caffeinated comfort.
From sprawling your post code in corrector fluid on your schoolbag to holding a tote with the Brick Lane sign on it. During my mornings spent at coffeeshops there is one thing that I have noticed about East Londoners, and that is that they love to represent the space they inhabit.
Barüch is an independent boutique on Roman Road. Owned and run by incredible supermom Angela. Her store is an Afro-Scandi lifestyle boutique. Barüch have an eco-friendly approach to all areas of the store and stock a cute collection of minimalistic designs by Scandinavian labels and her own in house range of vibrant west african prints on contemporary cuts.
After coming across Baruch, I really wanted to create something with the Vicky Park Boyfriend Sweatshirt by the Pavillion Cafe. The idea was to have stark contrast between the vibrant colours of some of the attire and location, to the greys of the sweater and the sweater weather as well for that matter. We went with nudes and peaches with a slight iridescence on the face for an early morning dew, it was also pretty early in the morning.
Hope ya’ll like these, stay blessed!
-Fiyah Model: Jessica Shwyouh Photographer: Tom As MUA and Styling: Alia Wasfi Location: Victoria Park (The Pavillion) & area surrounding Coat: I Want To Be Cleopatra Jones Coat, Traffic People GET IT Jumper: Barüch Vicky Park Boyfriend Sweatshirt, Barüch GET IT Culottes: Barüch Twilight Print Culottes, Barüch GET IT Socks: Ragyard Shoes: Nike
Muxima are incredibly in touch with the community and love to support all artists, hosting all kinds of different nights be it music, film or foodie events.
Located on Roman Road, it is a really interesting juxtaposition that transports you from the hustle and bustle of the market into what is probably the cosiest, most abstractly decorated living room ever. Sometimes I feel more home at Muxima than my own house.
Household objects defying gravity and placed at strange angles, glass bottle chandeliers are all details adding to the central vibe of the space. Most of the furniture is upcycled and the colours go from dreamy pastels to bolder hues.
Living and working in the same area for over two years, I have been fortunate enough (or not?) to have had many conversations with such a diverse range of people, and most often that not, local regulars usually want to speak about something area related. Fair enough.
The consistent theme being that it has become ‘safer’, and/or that the only worry is the frightening amount of man-buns. With a history that is a rollercoaster of extreme change, East London is def. a survivor.
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