I remember the first time I had to do a fashion shoot in a location that just wasn’t sparking any creative inspiration. You know the type – a drab concrete jungle instead of the lush green park I was longing for. It’s a predicament many of us in the fashion photography world face, don’t we?

In 2016, Vogue reported that over 50% of fashion editorials were shot on location rather than in a studio. Surprising, right? It sure makes you realize the value of being able to extract every ounce of potential from any given location. But how exactly can you transform ordinary locations into extraordinary fashion photography backdrops?

Discover the Magic in the Mundane

The secret lies in the way you perceive your surroundings. It may sound cliché but hear me out. ‘Hey, look at that peeling paint on the wall,’ one could say dismissively. On the contrary, you should think, ‘That wall has some character! Unpredictable texture could make a stylish contrast with the sleek modern lines of the clothing.’

Or consider a shabby old barber’s shop – with its vintage leather chairs and mirrors everywhere, its potential is ripe for the picking. You can read a lot more about transforming simple settings in this article on Timeless Photoshoot Ideas.

Cityscapes as Unique Backdrops

Ever strolled through your city and wondered if its bare walls, crowded avenues, or towering skyscrapers held potential? Believe it or not, they offer a myriad of opportunities for novel fashion photoshoots. How, you ask?

Imagine building an urban narrative around the stark gritty walls. They can be a powerful juxtaposition to a model draped in colorful, extravagant couture.

Or visualize a bustling avenue brimming with diverse individuals, neon lights, and traffic. With the right timing and composition, you can create a dynamic image capturing the rhythm of city life contrasted against the composed elegance of a fashion model. Even the impersonal, geometrical architecture of skyscrapers can serve as a striking backdrop for emphasizing the fluid lines of a fashion editorial.

The Dynamic of Natural Scenery

The undulating waves of grassy hills, autumn hues of a quiet forest, or even the raw, elemental beauty of rocky cliffs can add an ineffable charm to your fashion photography. The key is to fuse the theme of your shoot with the ambiance of the natural world, creating an almost poetic fusion of fashion and nature.

Indoor Spaces: A Canvas of Possibilities

Don’t underestimate indoor locations, like a quaint cafe or an artist’s loft. These spaces carry their own unique aesthetic that you can integrate into your fashion narrative. For instance, the minimalist interior of a stylish cafe can accentuate the color palette and structure of your subjects’ outfits.

An artist’s studio, brimming with oil paints, scattered brushes, and unfinished canvases, can lend an enchanting, bohemian vibe to the shoot. It’s a case of art meeting fashion, creating a beautiful symbiosis.

In the end, it’s crucial to remember that no location is ‘bad.’ Each comes with its own character, stories, and potential textures for striking imagery. It’s about adapting, imagining, and making the space work for you.


Transforming ordinary locations isn’t about luck. Rather, it depends on our ability to perceive, adapt, and weave a visual narrative that complements our subject. Like a chameleon blending into its surroundings, a savvy fashion photographer can extract beauty from the simplest of backdrops. So the next time you have a photoshoot lined up, challenge the norms, dare to imagine and explore locations in a fresh, exciting light. After all, isn’t that the essence of creativity?