A primary school orchestra in North London proved the perfect mix of colour and creativity in Emily Stein's latest shoot for Stella McCartney
With the kids heading back to school, fashion designer Stella McCartney has hit the zeitgeist with the campaign for her latest children’s fashion line, #StellaKidsBy. Shot by rising photographer Emily Stein, it features children from one primary school, playing their musical instruments, wearing McCartney’s clothes, and posed in front of a retro school-photo backdrop,
“I wanted the shoot to take place at a real school, with real kids who had a passion for music so that the shoot was authentic,” explains the photographer, who pitched the idea for the commission. After researching and contacting various schools about the project, it was Queensbridge Primary School, in Hackney, North London, that really appealed to her.
“It’s a normal school, with normal kids who are encouraged to be creative – something that seems to be lacking in state schools more and more,” says Stein. “Music is encouraged and celebrated at Queensbridge school and they have a great department – a lot of the kids playing more than one instrument from a young age.”
“The kids are all part of an orchestra and play their instruments regularly,” she continues. “When we were filming them I wanted to get them freestyling a bit, so we shot a mixture of practiced pieces and messing about.”
The photographer wanted to keep the shoot fun and exciting for the children, even when sitting them down for short interviews to feature in the accompanying video. In it, each child speaks passionately about their love for music, and how it helps them develop. “I was surprised when it came to the film how articulate the kids were,” says Stein.
“They are all very young and were asked questions on the spot which is not an easy thing for a child – or anyone – to answer. They came out with some thoughtful, comical and emotional answers.”
“Music is a language for all humans; it gets under your skin and brings out and expresses strong emotions,” she adds. “When we are young, we don’t have the words, so I think music can feel even more important. We need music to say the things we cannot say any other way.”
Emily Stein is represented by Blink Art www.blinkart.co.uk