Last Friday wrapped the exuberant and highly anticipated Afterpay Australian Fashion Week for 2022, and boy, it did not disappoint!
This year, things were hardly fashion as usual at the annual AAFW runway, with the week-long event pushing every boundary possible when it came to fashion innovation and inclusivity. There were world firsts, Australian fashion designers merging textiles with technology, and diversity across the board – both on and off the runway.
It was a whirlwind of a week to say the least, with so much behind the scenes content to divulge from the Carriageworks precinct – the resident home of AAFW and the backdrop for models, designers, influencers, brands and photographers alike. This is where all the pre-show action takes place.
Photographers reign free on the Carriageworks tracks
It’s monumental events like Sydney Fashion Week that inevitably engender a breeding ground for content creation. The tracks out the front of the Carriageworks is where it all kicks off each year, with influencers far and wide strutting their own runway on arrival. Accompanying these well-known social media profiles is a bank of photographers and content producers equipped with phones and cameras, ready to shoot their way through the week.
Each year, the tracks of the Carriageworks welcome anyone interested in being a part of the action – fashion enthusiasts and beyond. It’s a place where photographers and content producers of all levels can celebrate their craft and promote their work within the fashion space. Most years, the tracks see a herd of young, hungry and innovative photographers and videographers take advantage of the open stage, snapping both choreographed and uncontrived content of the people and the fashion that pass through. The result is something truly organic, with camera bearers completely unencumbered by obligation, but driven by inspiration, forging a modern take on fashion photography entirely.
To give you a glimpse into the masterminds behind those Instagram posts you’ve likely been drooling over all weekend, just suss Vogue’s fashion photographer, Liz Sunshine’sreels from the week. Event sponsor, Afterpay, even published their own segment on the street style of attendees, both influencers and not, snapped from the infamous entry tracks.
All about that BTS
As the name suggests, AAFW was hosted by Afterpay Australia who put on a mammoth schedule of shows, panels, and BTS cuts for the viewers at home. One of the most influential elements to Afterpay’s event strategy was their multiple social media docu-series highlighting some very insightful behind the scenes action.
The Making Of series took audiences backstage, giving them a peek into the creation and execution of building a runway. The Afterpay production team invited audiences to step inside the workings of a fashion show, taking viewers on an end-to-end journey, showcasing everything from pre-event planning and stage construction to pre-show hair and makeup. In doing so, Afterpay Australia amplified the general sense of exclusivity that surrounds AAFW, but flipped the switch in a way, bringing remote observers to the event via their digital devices. The production team was thus able to connect with audiences on another level, while also heightening the event’s core value of inclusivity.
Designer Chats was another of Afterpay Australia’s videography series which gave audiences an insight into the designers and their inspiration for each runway collection presented at AAFW. Produced with a collage of live shots from the AAFW fitting rooms, interviews with the creative directors, and editorial brand footage, the video series offered 2022 Australian Fashion Week viewers an insight into the designers that they may have otherwise neglected. While this series not only gave remote viewers a backstage seat into AAFW, it offered local Aussie brands a pedestal to spotlight their relevance and prominence within an often saturated market.
A new aesthetic for brand marketing.
In addition to this on-set buzz and hype surrounding AAFW, Sydney Fashion Week also gave rise to small and emerging designers who would otherwise have no platform to launch off when celebrating fashion to a high degree. Our friends over at Five by Flynn, while still growing their brand, were not involved in the runway side of things, however, took it upon themselves to celebrate Fashion Week by hosting a party to launch the week into gear. The team at Life Without Andy produced some killer shots of the night, with Ryley McGregor also taking to a trusty polaroid to create raw content for FBF in and amongst the crowds.
Another nod to modernised brand marketing saw the Milk Run team turn heads on the tracks of the Carriageworks, sending in a representative donned head to toe in a makeshift dress made out of Milk Run paper bags. In keeping with the brand’s flippant approach to advertising, Milk Run seized the opportunity to be snapped by photographers on the open-air runway, amplifying the already present hype of the emerging grocery delivery app.
So in summary, Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2022 was yet another display of creative innovation on all ends of the event. From the runway itself where dopamine dressing saw a new generation of fashion take stage, to the on-ground photographers who served us with an endless stream of creative ingenuity.