This week’s post is from professional photographer Celia Humphries.
I met her in Tokyo where she is based & after seeing her work I asked her if she would write something about her connection to Worlds End & Westwood clothing. Here it is & Thank you Celia (& by the way I love what she did with the Dix scarf).
I literally just finished working on the Dix photos.
I hope this is alright with you that I used your scarf probably a bit differently from intended, but it is so nice, it would have been a shame to wear it crumpled. So I attached it to a vintage red label corset, and paired it with a worlds end harness.
Which brings me to my affinity to Vivienne Westwood clothes.
I got my first piece over ten years ago. Basically it was out of necessity.
I was going to a casting and needed something elegant, yet different from all the boring or gaudy styles going around at the time. It also needed to fit my pronounced hour glass figure.
Now I come from a very academic background. I never had much interest in fashion prior to accidentally falling into this industry. Even to this date, I merely use garments to illustrate a story, and the trends to date it if need be.
Except for the Vivienne Westwood clothes. Those talk to me, and I find them very inspiring and easy to work with.
So there I was, audition and not up to industry standard attire. Then I saw that little knit top with the thick band on the waist paired with a red tweed riding skirt on a mannequin in a Red Label shop in Ginza. Perfect hourglass silhouette. Problem solved. And the skirt had huge pockets. I got the job and got back to the same shop to treat myself to an armour ring. And kept shopping there. I might not be a fashion buff, even now, but I definitely know a good design and I appreciated the quality of the clothes. It was easy to choose one good piece and use it in various ways.
Then the lovely lady working at the shop started sharing with me the ideas behind a particular design or print I would see. The first one I really noticed was a NINSDOL print. The one with a comic book like drawing of a jar of pills. I remember mentioning to the lady the print wasn’t as fine as the usual designs. Then I read the shirt, thought it was absolutely brilliant and bought it on the spot (it is one of the rare pieces I have misplaced unfortunately). I remember how this Huxley book had terrified me as a child. Almost as much as 1984 or some of the H.P. Lovecraft short stories! The more political and eco-friendly pieces are always the ones resonating the most with me.
And that’s another thing. It is quite nice to wear something comfortable and fitting. It is even nicer if it has been responsibly made and is displaying a nicely written educational message or a beautiful piece of art.
I have a tremendous amount of respect for Vivienne Westwood’s Active Resistance to Propaganda and promotion of proper culture. And I always look forward to seeing those references every new collection.
All the self-portraits are basically experiments, test shoots I do to better my technique. Eventually I might want to put an exhibition together.
Celia has taken so many great photos that I cannot include all of them here. I hope to use more of them in the future.