Where Fashion Photography Meets the Streets
By Marili Persson - 4 min read
Great textures, bold prints, embellishments and accessories. Street and fashion photographer Daniel Bruno Grandl, known as The Urban Spotter, finds fashionable people in urban scenes around the world. As part of this year's EyeEm Awards category 'The Fashion Photographer', we chatted to the London-based photographer to find out what it’s like to capture candid moments in the streets.
In the last decade, street fashion photography has become its own genre within the fashion industry. Daniel’s work focuses on capturing the unique and mesmerizing styles seen daily on the streets. It’s not the catwalks that brings him to Fashion Weeks across Europe: it’s instead what’s going on just outside the shows, on the streets. Since 2012, he runs the street and style blog The Urban Spotter, which he started with the idea of capturing peoples’ sense of fashion and how fashion is visible in our daily lives.
First off, can you tell us about yourself and how you got started in photography?
I am German, and I live in London. I love cats and dogs and of course photography. I started photography at university where I began to shoot students’ street style. I realised that a 9-5 office job was not the way forward for me, and I figured I could make a living as a self-employed photographer instead. I wanted to do something that was more fulfilling and meaningful to me.
How would you describe your work to someone who has never seen it?
I would call myself a street and fashion photographer. On one side, I document fashion trends on the streets around the world, and on the other side I shoot fashion related assignments in London.
How did you get into fashion photography?
I got into it through street style. Fashion to me is a fun way to express yourself to the outside world. Fashion is fun. It’s a luxury as I could live life without it, because it’s not necessary. But at the same time, it makes many people happy, at least in the short term.
In your opinion, what makes a great fashion photograph?
A good photograph can depend on many different factors and circumstances. To me a a great fashion photograph is about cool clothes, good light, a certain vibe and mood, where a story is being told.
Tell us what is like to always be working with new stylists, models, and designers.
By being a photographer you obviously meet many people. I find it always very exciting to meet people for the first time and to see what type of personalities they have. You get to know very unique and special people that you would definitely not meet in a regular job. That is something quite special. With some of those people you even develop friendships, which I find very cool.
What kind of impact do you hope to make in the fashion world in the next 10-15 years?
I basically just want to make great photographs and if other people like my work, then that is even better. What will be, will be. No pressure here about making an impact. Making an impact should not be a goal. It is like saying you want to be rich which to me is kind of a flat goal.
Of all the images you’ve made so far in your career, which is your favorite and why?
I am not sure I actually have a favorite image. However, I really like this one below. It’s an image I shot on B&W film in New York last year and I somehow love the rawness of it. It is just so New York, Manhattan. The Skyscrapers, the American flags and that long narrow street as well as all the lines in that photograph make it so brilliant in my opinion.
Visit Daniel’s website or find him on Instagram to see more of his stunning work. Do you also have a fashion story you’d like to share? Click here to submit your photos to this year’s EyeEm Awards, The Fashion Photographer.