The combination of a satin dress, a shot of Anna (Annie) Sutormina, and mention of Gabito Rohh in the previous post made me think of this iconic image – and it really looks like the same dress as that worn by Polina, albeit in a different colour. I’d love to know what gave Gabito the idea to pose the poor girl on what look like slimy cellar steps (in bare feet!) during the session – but it produced a stunningly beautiful, iconic shot. It’s the usual contrast of the soft, pretty and delicate with the harsh, dark and ugly: and it works to perfection – look at the diptych from the same session on Annie’s Facebook link below: very lovely in the pretty dress out in the sunshine, but not really iconic.
On the relevant page on FKids.com, Elizabeth Shirokova responds in the comments section to a previous one that seems to have been deleted:
“Each photographer is first and foremost an artist […….] The photo was taken at the end of the photo shoot, and I understand exactly how Gabito saw Anjuta (Annie) at that moment. I see something beautiful and mysterious in this picture! It’s like a porcelain doll from a collection, game or forgotten time, that was sent to the old cellar, and all her beauty has remained, not collecting time and dust. [……] and where do you see the bruises? […..] This photo has a story, everyone can imagine and develop the plot further. [….] I think the photo is very good from an artistic point of view [……] Anya is my favourite inspiration! Bravo Gabito!” (My clean-up)
Elizabeth is a slightly older Russian child model (who in fact recommends Annie on her home page on FKids) and presumably the comment she’s responding to had criticised the photograph because of a literalist view of a clearly artistic image. Anyway – good for her, a professional model has a good perspective on the artistic process, as well as the practical concerns of the profession, and it’s great to see them sticking up for each other, as well as for the photographer.
Gabito has a number of iconic images he’s taken over the years (see here for at least one) – but he’s one of very few whom I would consider has done it during a catwalk session. By definition it’s difficult to get perfect composition, light, focus, pose etc. in a runway situation – but this does it for me (he’s got it on the Flickr image link below):
…..Alina Yasheva during the Sanmar SS 13 Kids’ Catwalk (see her Facebook image link – to a related shot – below). There’s a slight variation with a bluer tinge in one with Julia Voronova’s watermark, but it’s clearly from the same camera:
…..Gabito specialises in catwalk sessions – and must have thousands of similar shots to his name – so why this one? Hard to say, except that it passes the pin test. As you’ve probably guessed, I hate Pinterest for the superficiality and lack of acknowledgment involved in addictively amassing every image you can find that remotely involves your pet obsession: but since it’s generally done impulsively, and purely on the visual quality/content of the image, there must be something special about an image for it to be particularly popular – and this one definitely is.
Yes, it gets repinned on any board that features “Westies” (white West Highland terriers), but beyond that I think it just symbolises “pretty girl in smart summer dress” to perfection: I don’t know if Gabito sells his work as stock, but I think this will always have a market….
Here’s Alina again, with Anna Fedorova wearing the design as a skirt:
(The featured image above the title isn’t one I’d consider iconic in the restricted field of girls’ fashion/portrait photography, but it’s by Gabito, and it’s typical of the tender quality his portraits always have: a great love and respect for his models…this is Maroussia Knekova.)