Posts tagged trench coat

It’s All About Attitude

G63A9702copy-copylowI have been thinking a lot about my process and what it is about each person that I stop on the street that draws me to want to take their photograph. In those conversations I have also tried to dissect the elements that make up one’s style and have wondered if it’s even something that can be put into words. I created Advanced Style as a forum for sharing the style and stories of men and women over 60. People who I have always admired and looked up to, but also a segment of the population that is oftentimes marginalized, ignored and made to feel invisible. Style has the power to create a conversation. A great accessory can be the starting point to a deeper exchange about life, vitality, and spirit. In creating my blog I never looked at Advanced Style as being a fashion guide, but rather a place to share, to inspire, and to celebrate the wisdom, creativity, and freedom that comes with age. I try to present a varied approach to style and lifestyle.

As a photographer much of my work is done on the street, looking for people who catch my eye. I’m not really looking to define what is in good or bad taste and  I believe style to be very personal and subjective. What I have noticed is that each personal I photograph, whether they dress classic and elegant or eccentric and avant garde, has a spirit that shines way brighter than any piece of clothing they have on. They way we tie a scarf, put on a touch of red lipstick, or mix accessories can a make a world of difference, but above all else it’s our attitude, they way we stand and carry ourselves through life that truly characterizes our style. Why is that we can look at two people wearing very similar outfits and be drawn to one over the other?

One of my earliest muses Mimi Weddell put it best when she said, “You dance as you walk through life, as you sail through life. And furthermore, it heightens your living as of the moment. If you don’t dance, for heaven’s sake, you can not aspire, you don’t lift up from this earth.”

When I asked Gerry (pictured above) how she felt about style she told me that she like to try a bit of everything, but she prefers classic looks and has always been inspired by Audrey Hepburn. This conversation quickly shifted to the revelation that Gerry is about to turn 91 and as of late she is surprised by the attention she has been receiving. As a younger person, she said that no one ever asked for her photograph, but I was the second person that week who approached her about taking her picture. When I asked her what her secret was she announced proudly, “I eat like a horse”.

Advanced Style in Cologne

[Photos from Anders-Anziehen]

I’m always excited to find examples of advanced style on other people’s blogs. My pal MISTER MORT’s blog led me to a street style site out of Cologne called Anders-Anziehen, run by costume designer Sandra Smilla Dankert. Smilla presents a diverse group of ages and styles and I was particularly drawn to her awesome selection of Advanced Style. I asked if she would share these photos with us.She happily agreed and gave some great insight into these wonderful photos below:

“I asked the woman with the flowers and the hat for whom the beautiful flowers were for , and she told me ;” For myself… for the nice things in life you have an own responsibility, I think…so…” that’s what she said. :-)”

“The other women ,in the blue dress, with flowers; she couldn’t believe that I want to take a picture of her, she was highly surprised.She told me that she found the flowers in some garbage box on the street a minute ago, they stuck in it like a decoration.She was a very fine lady, seems to be not too rich, and spending all her money for her 4 children and about 8 or 9 grandchildren.She admired that I am a tailor and a costume designer- she was really interested in my blog project- very openhearted.She would have loved to be a Tailor as well, and then she smiled and said- “well- with 4 children you more or less just become a tailor in a way.”

“I met the early bird guy this morning, around 8 , he came home from shopping. It took me a while to explain the difference between Internet and newspapers-he thought I was from the newspapers.He first was very skeptical, but somehow my great mood just reached him in a way,and he smiled- and said OK- take your picture.To be dressed well is very important to him.”

“The older lady with the walking-help with the walking cart she was so great! She is 97 years old. She told me that she came to cologne in the age of 25.She was married to a fabricator of clothes, they had money, and she ran around in very chic and stylish clothes. She loved to be dressed exquisite..and special.”

Thanks for sharing your gorgeous photos!