This is something we’ve seen precisely never: figure skaters in clothes that don’t look like someone vomited a bag of rhinestones.
Men’s fashion website Fantastic Man tapped the clever Dutch art pair Lernert & Sander to make promo videos by filming two male figure skaters spinning around in chic (distinctly unglittery) threads from Prada, Hermès, Calvin Klein, Viktor & Rolf, and Dries Van Noten. Then Lernert & Sander, working with the fashion-production house White Lodge, slowed the footage down–waaaaaaaay down. We’re talking split seconds stretched to minute-long cuts. Take a look:
There’s something eminently hypnotic about figure skaters twirling around in super slo-mo, especially when you’re not blinded by an outrageous getup. Okay, with the exception of the Hermès leather suit and BX-1 helmet, above. (Did the stylist mistake this for an S&M motocross shoot?)
No matter. As marketing goes, it’s brilliant: Fashion people are always talking about the way clothing “moves,” a tough thing to capture on the web. Here, you’ve got the clothes stretching and flowing in all sorts of extreme ways–A sit spin! An upright catch-foot spin! A catch-knee camel spin!–but their motion’s decelerated so drastically, you can make out every last indecently expensive seam. It’s the ultimate fashion advertisement.
White Lodge’s Stephen Whelan explains how the videos were shot (and why they were no cakewalk for the skaters):
The films were recorded on a Photron BC2 camera at 2,000 frames per second. This compares with the normal frame rate for PAL of 25fps–so almost 200 times the normal number of frames you would get in a second of regular footage. Each frame was exposed for 1/4000th of a second. Because of this you need six times the normal level of light. Imagine being bombarded by all that heat while executing a precise athletic movement on cue numerous times. Our skaters were fantastic and also perspiring!
The films ran on Fantastic Man’s website last week. Full details here.
[Hat tip to Creative Review]