Reiss Elements AW '10

Dazed talks to the director behind Reiss' latest film project about the power of nature and what it's like working with animals

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The fashion film movement has undoubtedly hit the mainstream in recent seasons and now the high street has entered the fray. Reiss recognised that choosing to shoot the AW '10 campaign on video was a bold move but were confident that it was the right time for the brand to take such a step. The choice became apparent on the back of the success of the 1971 Reiss videos. With the realisation that video has such powerful engagement potential as well as an ability to capture the sentiment of the brand, it was a clear decision. The resulting film, Elements, provides an adrenaline shot to the veins of the high street and to the brand itself. The film might not launch until September but we can share a preview clip with you. The creative inspiration came as the result of an artistic collaboration with Jamie Morgan, renowned photographer and film maker who founded London’s creative collective ‘buffalo’ in the 1980’s. Here we talk to the man himself to learn about how the collaboration came to be and how it evolved in the film we see today.

Dazed Digital: How did this project come to be and how did it evolve in to the campaign we see today?
Jamie Morgan: I was approached by Ashley Heath editor of Pop who I work with. He had seen a recent film I made for the twenty five year celebration of Dr Martens and he felt the black and white slow-motion concept could fit well with what Reiss where looking for to progress the creative image of their brand. Also the fact that I shoot both film and stills was just what this project needed.

DD: David Reiss and Andy Rogers (Brand Director) both mentioned that this film came from a creative place rather than a purely selling place. As director this must've given you a great deal of creative freedom while at the same time putting a little bit of pressure on you to create something truly special....how was the experience?
Jamie Morgan: It is always nice when a client wants a strong creative concept and don't get obsessed with showing product. However there is always the consideration of what the client needs to show product wise, balanced with your own personal creative vision. This is the water that all us creatives swim in. Reiss definatley had product considerations but they where flexible in regard to what I felt was best for the film.

DD: Could you talk us through the film's inspiration. The film incorporates a number of symbolic animals, have you got any on set animal related anecdotes/nightmares you can share with us?
Jamie Morgan: The concept was based around the power of nature. The force it holds over us humans and as you say our relationship to the natural world including animals. We are all animals with animal instincts and hungers. So the girl in the film, Natassa, is a very powerful woman and expresses an array of emotions. In a way the animals echo this, the bird is a sense of freedom, the horse has a quite sensual power and so on. Also the texture of the Animal skin and fur inspires the texture and quality of the fabrics. No funny stories about the shooting of the animals, it was quite a serious moment on the shoot, people where humbled by the beauty of these dignified creatures.

DD: Finally, what's next?
Jamie Morgan:  POP mag stills and a Nike film......keep on moving!

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