LONDON — Dazed magazine is set to mark its 25 years in business with a special issue created by former staffers, including Rankin, the title’s cofounder, and Katie Grand, the magazine’s first fashion director and now Love magazine’s editor in chief. Other names formerly on the glossy’s masthead that have styled, photographed or written for the anniversary issue include Nicola Formichetti, Katy England, Nicki Bidder, Karen Langley, Alister Mackie and Katie Shillingford.
This story first appeared in the September 13, 2016 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The 336-page issue will hit newsstands on Sept. 20, while the marketing campaign kicks off today. The glossy, launched in 1991 and published by Dazed Media, will feature nine special covers, including one with Gigi Hadid. Other covers have been shot by photographers including Ethan James Green, Ben Toms, Roe Ethridge and Ryan McGinley.
Hadid was photographed by Rankin and styled by Grand. The 21-year-old model wears a cotton Disney x Coach 1941 Mickey T-shirt with American Apparel cotton running shorts.
“Gigi has that effortless quality about her,” Rankin said. “I’ve worked with some of the best models, and she’s up there with those types of supermodels. She’s also got an absolutely natural ability to act, which is pretty unique in a model. I’m really excited to see where she goes from here because she’s got all the raw potential.
“It was Katie’s suggestion to shoot Gigi and I didn’t even question it,” Rankin added. “I’ve always had faith in her judgment about people and talent. We used to argue a lot about fashion, but I’ve definitely bowed to her superiority. I just do what I’m told now; I miss those fights though, because they came from passion and dedication.”
Rankin reminisced about the covers that Grand created. “It’s funny because Katie and I kind of grew up together. All of our first shoots — the successful ones — were together,” Rankin said. “We have always been on a very similar wavelength. I’ve always loved what she does. I love her passion and belief in herself. She was like that right from the beginning. So it was a bit like getting the band back together, nothing had really changed, apart from the fact that we don’t fight over the fashion anymore.”
From turning the office into a bedsit — so that the magazine could pay lower taxes — to nabbing Helena Christensen for a cover, the British lensman recalled quite a few interesting moments while working on the magazine. “I flew to America to shoot David Bowie when no one else wanted me to go, because he wasn’t considered cool at the time,” Rankin said.
“One of my favorite hoaxes was when retouching was at its height. I realized I could get a Michael Jackson lookalike and retouch him to look just like MJ. It was a humorous critique of what was going on in the world of retouching and plastic surgery. To this day, people still think I’ve photographed Michael Jackson,” he added.
Grand said she met her husband, Steve Mackey, during her Dazed days. “He used to come and hang out at the studio. Matt Roach [now creative director at Love magazine] used to live in the basement so when we were really hung over we’d get into his ‘bed/sofa’ under his ‘Star Wars’ duvet. And the rows were spectacular, like us all arguing whether we should work with David Bowie as ‘Was it cool?’”
The anniversary issue’s theme is “ultimate fantasy,” and includes an 18-page feature on Hadid by 13-year-old Lila Moss Hack, the daughter of Kate Moss and Jefferson Hack, cofounder of Dazed, and her best friend Stella Jones. The trio discuss topics such as boyfriends and body confidence.
Hadid, who has taken to social media in the past to express her views on body image, told Hack and Jones the importance of different body types in the fashion industry. “I think there’s more than teaching what body types are correct,” Hadid said. “It’s important to teach that we are putting models out there who are confident in their bodies…so that girls who relate to them know it’s coming from a good place.”
Other content includes a feature on Dazed alumni and an interview between RuPaul and Dolly Parton.
The magazine will run a campaign to promote the issue on its web site and social media channels. The campaign includes a playful short film — just under two minutes — that features Hadid at the Dazed headquarters. She’s seen toying with the photocopier, trashing computers and tagging graffiti in the office.
The magazine will host a party in London to celebrate a cover created with Burberry on Sept. 20. The magazine also plans to host a 25th anniversary party with Calvin Klein.
After 22 years at 112-116 Old Street, the magazine will also be moving its offices to central London.
The monthly magazine is priced at 4.50 pounds, or $6 at current exchange.