Topshop, H&M, Mango, they’re all at it with their boldface photographers and supermodel ad campaigns. Latest to join Josh Olins, Terry Richardson et al in the high street ad campaigns camp is Ellen Von Unwerth for River Island. In its second season with Von Unwerth’s finger on the shutter, River Island’s spring-summer 2012 campaign captures the photographer’s signature “sexy but cheeky charm that suits the spirit of our brand,” as brand director Frida Kaikobad puts it.
In these straightened times is it not odd that high street brands have money sloshing around to hire the big guns? Au contraire. According to Kaikobad, the use of a name like Von Unwerth delivers a message of positivity and brand confidence. As she explains, “over the last two years, River Island has reinvigorated its product offer, upped its design and quality, yet lowered its entry price point. The impact and energy of this campaign will offer an escapism that will support the growth of the brand both in the UK and internationally.”