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Fashion photographers on their most memorable Canadian images


Inspiration points

To mark the sesquicentennial, top fashion imagemakers reflect on the captivating Canadian landscapes, personalities and cultural moments behind some of their most memorable photos

"Being invited to work with the talented Cirque du Soleil performers was a great thrill. I wanted to create an image that effortlessly blended the impressive staging with current fashions. I sketched every photo beforehand to be prepared to work around the performers' tight practice schedules. Cirque du Soleil is a uniquely Canadian creation, renowned worldwide." - Chris Nicholls

This image appeared in a 2014 issue of Fashion.

"What inspires me is the journey. The photo [of actor Pamela Anderson] was taken for a group of photos I did on Canadian women in the nineties to raise money for breast cancer. Canadian photographer, Canadian girl, wrapped in a Canadian flag…bonjour!" - Bryan Adams

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This image appeared in a 1999 issue of Flare.

"We have a rich history of multiculturalism – in fact that is why my parents chose Canada when they were refugees from the Hungarian Revolution. My mother always reminded me that Canada is a mosaic and I take that knowledge with me on every shoot. The dress is Valentino, an Italian fashion house based in Rome, and the fabric was inspired by Métis artist Christi Belcourt (Belcourt's piece Water Song is in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada). The designers from Valentino worked closely with Ms. Belcourt to faithfully reproduce the complex nature of her painting." - Gabor Jurina

This image appeared in a 2015 issue of Palm Beach Magazine.

"This is an image from the first fashion editorial we shot after we moved back to Canada from the UK. To us, it represents generations of amazing Canadian faces. We are inspired to make images here by the hugely diverse range of groups and ethnicities and the openness of the people around us." - Saty Namvar and Pratha Samyrajah

This image of models Stacey McKenzie and Kayla Clarke appeared in a 2013 issue of Open Lab Magazine.

"A boy in a pair of Roots swim trunks hand paddling a floating wooden raft down a lake in Algonquin Park at dusk is a pretty uniquely Canadian image. The shot was a team effort with John Gerhardt and Suzanne Boyd, the fashion editor and editor in chief [respectively] of Flare magazine at the time. It was part of a 30-page story to celebrate the iconic Roots brand and its incredible imprint on Canadian pop culture." - Chris Chapman

This image appeared in a 2002 issue of Flare and as part of the book Roots: 40 Years of Style.

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"The team wanted to achieve the feel of a Canadian Pacific hotel postcard from back when these hotels were originally built. [Another photo from the series] was shot in one of the Chateau Lake Louise's large bay windows with the model looking out onto the lake and mountains." - Riley Stewart

This image was photographed at Lake Louise during a cross-country shoot for the Canada 150 travel edition of Globe Style Advisor.

These interviews have been condensed and edited.

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