Fashion Film Awards at Harrods

LONDON — Harrods and ShowStudio put fashion film under the spotlight this week, hosting an awards ceremony and private screening on the top floor of the store.

The panel of judges, Simone Rocha, Sam McKnight and Harrods’ creative visual director Alex Wells-Greco watched hundreds of films and selected eight winners in categories such as best fashion film and best beauty film.

“About 30 years ago when I was shooting Naomi Campbell, she was wearing a beautiful Yohji Yamamoto scarlet coat and spinning and dancing to a tape of Prince. It occurred to me that actually every designer creates a piece of clothing to be seen in movement so I created a platform for it to celebrate the medium,” said ShowStudio’s founder Nick Knight.

This year, Knight expanded the award across eight categories given the increased uptake and the breadth of the medium. “You’ve got beauty films, new technologies, a lot of animation and 3-D scanning, so it seems a bit unfair to judge the skate film next to a high-fashion film,” he said, adding that he preferred films without a narrative.

“You have a slightly different take to conventional film, for example if it’s a girl jumping, she looks amazing because the clothes have the narrative, it’s about the woman and the clothes.”

Rocha said she was drawn to films that were cinematic. She shied away from those that were product-focused and used models.

“I was really interested in one that had an amazing narrative of a ballet that felt like a different perspective on a fashion film, and a beauty one that was almost like a movement of still life. I thought it was such an interesting way of putting together a fashion film because neither of them was on models,” she said.

This cinematic style was reflected in the short “Before and After” by Polina Zaitseva, which won best beauty film award. It told the story of a bright red lipstick, from being made from molds and then being cut, sliced up and used.

“Wear Me Like Water” by Sinéad O’Dwyer won best fashion brand film. It featured women of all sizes lounging and playing in a swimming pool. “13” by Frederik Heyman for GentleMonster won best animated brand film. The short used 3-D scanning techniques to create moving graphics.

According to Knight, 3-D scanning, virtual and augmented reality will be part of a new wave of fashion films. He’s working with Martin Margiela on an immersive fashion film.

Wells-Greco of Harrods said he was drawn to bold animations and new techniques.

“Bold animations stood out to me because we have invested a lot of time and money to transform our media portfolios, as well as heavily investing in transforming our fashion floors for men’s and women’s. We like to refer to ourselves as being creators of magic. Film is an experience and I want to elevate our customer’s experience in every inch of the store,” he said.

One of Wells-Greco’s favorite films was “Unwordable” by Killian Lassablière and Antoine Plainfossé, which won the “partnership award.” “Hidden” by DBLG won best fashion film; “Offset” by Arice won best animated film and “#Roppa” by Udocorg won best long-format film.

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