I never, ever take my Birkenstock clogs off, that's why I have many pairs in many colors, so this makes me happy!. To think that one day the Sartorialist might see me in the streets and would not get put off by my shoes!.
This is a neat photo. Its what fashion photographers are always trying to capture in studio shots where the models are jumping around and there are fans blowing, but this is real. i like how the straps of the shoes add to the motion. My least favorite shoes in the world, by the way.
I joked on Birks about one hour ago. Context: Sitting in the locker-room with a friend after having played icehockey for the first time this season, complaining about our feet hurting. He said: good to be back in the Birkenstocks. I answered: Birks are the problem – They ruin our mental strength. (german cliche on german shoes) Since I also wear Birkenstock occasionally I am appeased to see this strong woman just after coming home.
I used to think the black birkenstocks were particularly ugly (not that I don't own them in different colors) but the other day I saw someone wearing them in real life and I thought they looked really pretty. Somehow it works, especially here with that nice hair!
what a beautiful picture. i really don't know (i'm a guy,) but i think that look could be very affordable, right? i was just browsing the antithesis of this site: http://www.peopleofwalmart.com they get a lot of hate mail for "picking on the poor." but, having class and style is not limited to the rich. to me, this is the beauty of your work, Scott. "i could be that beautiful" (well, maybe not me, but my wife.)
The only shoes uglier than these are crocs. But this picture is really about her beautiful hair, and the all black outfit in contrast with the color of her hair, and the sense of volume, empty space, enclosed by the hair and the bagginess of the clothes. And about the coming of fall! Hooray!
But seriously, I agree with the post that she looks like she is running down to the corner to buy some smokes. Or cold medecine. It's a strange thing about cities: you have the chance to be vulnerable in front of a lot of people. And I think that is why this image is appealing.
I absolutely ADORE the Birks in this shot. As everyone else has said, I love the sense of motion, the color aesthetics of the whole shot, the motionless cars, her gorgeous hair in flight, the black outfit, the sense of fall captured by the jacket–and the practical shoes!
I know Birkenstocks trigger either a love 'em or hate 'em response–no one is ever neutral on Birkenstocks, which in itself speaks volumes about the power of their "look." For me, though, they say "Screw conventional beauty, I'm my own person."
I agree with Pietro completely, the clothes are too baggy and they detarct from her natural gifts of beauty. However, the true eyesore, terrible eyesore, is the footwear. There are many comfortable shoes around; a pair of Superga runners in blue would have been perfect with this outfit, but the Birkenstocks send an odd signal of deliberate: "i'm angry and trying my best to look ugly".
I feel this picture epitomizes NYC, the girl in motion, hurrying somewhere, all in black, and the yellow cab… I love the outfit and I think the shoes raise it to another level, it would not be the same, if she were wearing some other footwear. It's so nice to see someone not in the uniform of the day, shoes with heel lengths longer than their skirts!
the two Italian men commenting on here that this woman's clothing isn't revealing enough make me laugh. News flash, boys: fortunately, the vulgar and all-too-prevalent Italian bimbo look (overly-tanned muffin top, pushup bra under tight, artificial fiber top, and a huge, shiny metallic, studded handbag doubling as a reflective safety vest) just isn't much seen outside of Italy. This woman epitomizes grace, style and individuality. One doesn't have to "put all the goods in the shop window," as my great grandmother would have said, to show real beauty. And PS: women were not put on this earth to display themselves to you, despite what you may have "learned" from Italian television.
I agree with Alessandro completely and I disagree with Anon 3:44 AM completely. Finally, a bit of discussion.
With all due respect to you Anon, and the reason which triggered Scott to deem the subject worthy of immortality on his esteemed blog, I broadcast my sentiments not out of malice but genuinely from my aesthetic perspective as a man – an aesthete that has been embroiled in the industry for some time.
Leonardo Da Vinci once said that "simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." The clothes that I see being dragged across the zebra crossing are neither simple nor sophisticated.
They may be appealing to you from the perspective of a woman but to me they do zero.
You say, "women were not put on this earth to display themselves to you [men]" In the grand scheme of things and the finely tuned cogs of mother nature, you will find that you are wrong.
But Pietro, it's only your perception that this woman is not dressed attractively.
Once upon a time, a woman could dress with taste and discretion — and in shoes in which she could walk, yet — and men would still find her attractive, despite not being able to see her cleavage, her navel, eight inches of thigh and her thong underwear. Are you seriously arguing that, for instance, Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelly were somehow sexless, simply because they weren't spilling out of their clothes and tottering down the street in six inch heels?
The obvious and the vulgar have only recently and regrettably become the norm; the words "lowest common denominator" spring to mind. Still, it's amazing how quickly someone like you has managed to develop the sense that you are entitled to see a T&A show on the street.
Anon 10:56, you're preaching to the choirboy. I find what you describe just as detestable. From a man's perspective, I find an overabundance of skin to be vulgar. Any of my comments throughout Scott's blog are a testament that I admire taste and discretion in a woman's choice of clothing rather than peeking thongs, winking navels, stilts and cleavages.
Give me an Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelly whose feminine charms still inspire today over a Pamela Anderson or Paris Hilton type anytime.
Look, read my comments about Gloria above (posted by Scott at 10:11 AM) or the two ladies under Tonal Trenching (posted by Scott at 5:00 PM) and you will understand that our sentiments run somewhat in harmony.
Yet I stand firm, although the lady is obviously attractive, I find this lady's outfit somewhat reminiscent of a burka, too isolating from her environment, too protective of imaginary fiends, whether they be the climate or ogling male eyes. As a man, I would not approach the lady for fear of having a ninja star lodged in my forehead.
I saw the Avedon show at SFMOMA last week, and in my mind have been comparing and contrasting your work and his.
I love your work, but often it's static, and one of the things Avedon did was put motion into fashion photography.
I was just this evening telling someone about your work, and noting it's largely static nature, and now this!!!
I don't see this particular picture as being about the clothes. In fact, the details that much of the work on this site concentrates on – fit, for instance – are lost here. This image is about the purity of the image itself. If you caught a glimpse of this woman out of the corner of your eye, this image, would it not burn into your retina, and it's after-image shimmer in your cortex, for a noticeable period? I would consider myself LUCKY for the rest of the day.
The pictures is beuatiful, no doubt. But given the title of this blog and the majority of posts, it's hardly out of place to comment on the clothes. It is most certainly not out of place to comment on Birkenstocks, an item of clothing that in my view is always out of place. If anything this picture serves as yet another example of how Birkenticks (and shoes) can affect the way somebody looks. These shoes have the power to infuse ugliness; even Heidi Klum looks ugly with them. Birkentocks are the proverbial 'ugly stick'.