Fashion Month is upon us and one of my favourite elements is all the backstage photography. So much more atmospheric than the front-on catwalk shots we’re used to, no? Elise Toïdé is one of the photographers who excels in this reportage style. (And she took the photos for the Paris-based women in my book.) Elise is great at capturing a sense of intimacy, even in chaotic surroundings. Having studied documentary photography at the International Center of Photography in New York she is now based in Paris. Her portraiture, fashion and reportage images have been featured in i-D, Crash and METAL and her regular Paris Fashion Week clients include Yohji Yamamoto (above) and Dior.
I asked Elise to pick some memorable favourites from her archive and share them here. Enjoy!
This image (above) comes from my first commissioned fashion editorial for METAL in 2011, shot using film. Until then, I was almost exclusively shooting street photography in Brooklyn, where I was living at the time. This is where I really started photography; I had to capture this energy, the people that surrounded me to be able to take over the city. Photography became really important in my life, it allows me to be deeply in the moment, take possession of a place and see different things every time. I need to be documenting my surroundings…
…Like this park in Montreuil that I fell in love with when I arrived in Montreuil four years ago. I go there as often as I can. I am shooting an ongoing personal series there, like a portrait, trying to capture its emotions.
I have been lucky to shoot this talented filmmaker for CRASH Magazine. This was challenging and so interesting. When I shoot portraits, I aim for the letting go. I try to get a natural feel and Xavier Dolan is into control but we made it!
This is also part of an ongoing series in Montreuil. I shoot girls from all over the world in my neighborhood. We walk around, I get to know them and share a nice time and we stop when we feel the place or moment is right. As always in my approach, I am looking for something natural and simple, no fashion pose.
When I shoot fashion shows behind the scenes, I always try to get moments. The in-between, the calm before the storm, the suspended time in the hectic backstage area. This one is Martin Margiela Artisanal Haute Couture, I think it was the last collection before Galliano joined.
WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
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