La Jolla Fashion Film Festival

The La Jolla Fashion Film Festival (LJFF) is an annual three-day film festival and host of the International Fashion Film Awards held in La Jolla, California. LJFF is the first international Fashion Film Festival of its kind to be founded in North America. This elite fashion industry event screens some of the top fashion films produced worldwide. The festival features panel discussions, seminars, after parties, and an award ceremony.

The festival is the World’s largest gathering of fashion filmmakers and is the global marketplace for fashion film. Their mission is to empower, support and recognise the individual creative professionals who make up the fashion film community worldwide. Hundreds of fashion filmmakers from around the world attend the event, which is in its 9th year.

In my opinion, LIFF is amazing for all creators as there is a chance that they can receive global promotion and even stage time. The red carpet events also receive press attention and there may be the opportunity to make industry connections; this would be vital especially for up-and-coming creators.

An international jury award filmmakers in 18 different categories. I had a looked through previous winner’s work and was especially drawn to a couple of award winners. In 2016, ‘Nubivagant’ by Esther Dorhout Mees was nominated for eight awards and won two of these prizes; Best Hairstyling and Best Picture home. The film was broadcast as part of her first show during Paris Fashion Week.

I was fascinated by the constant interaction between body and fabric. Dorhout Mees’ collections are often inspired by natural, organic shapes, animal prints and 3D textures, where the female body is always the starting point. Her style, I believe is feminine and elegant, but also created to flatter the form of female body. She really uses her garments to make the body stand out and accentuate it in the right places, but not in an obvious way. The film in some ways mirrors her collections as I feel that she likes to tell stories with the collections.

Another winner in 2016 was ‘Sophie: A Story of Discovery’ which is a narrated fairy tale, directed by David Todd McCarty. It won the award for best art direction. The short film is beautifully shot and styled. It was the sixth film in a series of fashion films for a Somerset Collection, a luxury shopping centre in the Detroit suburbs. It was shot in New York, Philadelphia, Montana, New Orleans and Paris. The film for me, moved beyond a location and the clothes; it told a story.

I discovered that the inspiration began with the location: an entire white on white apartment; white floors, walls, furniture and decor. The idea was to create a character that began life in a world without color. A narrator was used to tell the story of the young woman. The film has quite a formal set design with no camera movement. I think I was probably most drawn to the use of single colour clothes; yellow. More and more colour in the sets was added throughout, ending on a vibrant setting.

When researching the film festival, I found out that there are also international fashion film festivals in other locations all over the world, for example, America, UK, Brussels, Berlin, Canada, Australia, Buenos Aires.

The London Film Festival is an exclusive and intimate event held once a year. It offers a fresh and colourful look at the innovative world of fashion film. The event showcases a fusion of the work of creative professionals within the fashion, film and advertising industries. I believe that this genre of film is a brilliant exploration and point of discussion.

The London festival also has an award ceremony and the prizes are given to the best submissions from the fashion film community, including students, industry professionals, and major brands. The winners consist of a varied selection of documentaries, fashion films and fashion shots. I feel that this stage would be amazing for students to show their talents and network with industry professionals such as film-makers, photographers, models and artists.

I would definitely recommend giving the two short films that I mentioned a watch; they are executed perfectly in my opinion.


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