Predicting the Future of Fashion Photography if COVID 19 Isn’t Beaten

Predicting the Future of Fashion Photography if COVID 19 Isn’t Beaten

We’ve heard the news, and we’re all a bit paranoid. It’s understandable. But, the economy is suffering, and so are our jobs and projects. Our clients aren’t calling, because the industry has come to a standstill. It’s said that we should (hopefully) have a vaccine by the end of next year, so for the immediate future, we will need to adapt.

So, what does the future look like for fashion and beauty photography if the virus isn’t beaten? Here are a few imagined scenarios where I think the virus could take us:

Scenario 1: Shoot With Complete Antivirus Kits on All Crew

Either the budget allows for suits to be warn by everyone, or the model goes into a glass cage that protects the talent. Teams get smaller, and there is some transformation of the tasks. Digital teams move off-location and work from an online portal. Software is updated to handle this type of infrastructure. Studios change to facilitate the reduction of risks and adapt with glass walls separating the model and the rest of the team. Models dress themselves, and makeup is done with the makeup artists wearing masks and all the needed gear preventing them potentially infecting or being infected by someone else.

Scenario 2: Models Get Replaced by Virtual Models

It is becoming harder and harder to see the difference between what’s real and what’s simulated, and the ad and fashion industry could start using it. Photographers may become more desktop-oriented and choose stills from a CGI-generated model. Teams change to accommodate this, and the graphics, lighting, video, and stills teams all work on the same project remotely yet at the same time.

Scenario 3: Testing, Testing

Tests are done by third-party companies as the teams arrive at the shoot. Every person is scanned to be sure the virus is identified and doesn’t enter the working studio for the day. Teams are also on lockdown, and for shoots and productions stretching over a week, hotels or rooms are booked, with no one coming into contact with anyone else.


These are just imaginary scenarios, but it’s worth thinking about how we will need to adjust to the new world we now live in. How would you imagine your working life as a photographer and the industry as a whole changing? Let us know in the comments what you imagine the future to be. 

Wouter du Toit's picture

Wouter is a portrait and street photographer based in Paris, France. He's originally from Cape Town, South Africa. He does image retouching for clients in the beauty and fashion industry and enjoys how technology makes new ways of photography possible.

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Can FStoppers stop using Covid to produce frankly ridiculous articles, this virus should not be used as click bait, and this article is most definitely that.

It's not intended to use Covid as clickbait. I wrote it to see if we're dealt certain cards, if we're able to think of some solutions instead of only talking about the problem and that's not ridiculous at all.

What if the sun expands and encompasses the earth? What if cats take this chance to enslave humanity. In the situations you are hypothesizing society would be gone and no one would care about fashion photography. If the people who actually make the food,water,medicine, fuel can't work we are done. Of course as they find more and more asymptomatic carriers the hysteria seems to be increasing for some reason

Reassuring that rental companies, like LensRentals etc, have said they're disinfecting gear before sending it out.

I'm gonna die if they actually write it. I wouldn't be surprised though.

I've already wrote one, it's in the queue 😇

LMFAO. Man you guys must be hard up for views. Actually, if you look at all the non ridiculous articles written, you have little to no comments which tells me you're losing engagement. Advice: write articles photographers actually want to read or change the name of your site to something more fitting like The National Enquirer for Photographers.

I have to agree with the sentiment above. This is what you get when rational thinking and reasoning gives way to groupthink.

Your ego really knows no bounds, and it’s gross

An interesting article that demonstrates most beautifully how to write a full page of nothing.
If one minute of thought went into the planning of the article you would have realised that if COVID-19 remained so bad there would be no fashion industry wanting any photographs from anyone.

The fashion industry has already taken a big hit from a drop in sales in China, people having more important things to worry about than a new LV handbag. However, people will learn how to live the virus for it is far from the worse threat the human race has ever faced. In China many people and places are returning to a rather uneasy version of normality. The rest of the world will follow at some point down the line.

Really nice article. Obviously new times requure new measures. I teach CGI product photography at Still Live Academy and I see a huge increase in students recently. CGI definitely is one way to go about it. Getting on board with CGI it's not that big of a deal anyway. Just another tool something like Photoshop 10-15 years ago. Photographers are good at adapting to new technologies and this is the time to do it again.

Ridiculous because it doesn't discuss what is actually happening. Some cover models are taking their own photographs.
if that's the future of Fashion Photography then a lot of the Establishment is out of work!