2 min

When you are fabulous

Trawling for fashion talent

Credit: TJ Ngan

Snapshot is a creative, inspiring and educational event that brings together fashion designers, fashion stylists, hair stylists, make-up artists, models and photographers from across Canada and the United States. It then challenges them to complete a fashion photo-shoot in 48 hours.

Participants convened this year at Opus Hotel’s Elixir, on Jul 19. Some 15 teams of six people were drawn at random, inspiration packs and rulebooks were distributed, and at precisely 6 pm the challenge began. Forty-eight hours later, the teams submitted their display-ready images. Submitted images and designs will be on display at Pacific Centre from Jul 22-25, for the public to view and vote for the Audience Choice award (an eight-page fashion spread in ION Magazine).

Michael Venus: How did the idea to do this come to reality?

Christopher Quigley: The original concept was conceived of by myself and model/actress Pauline Matterson. We were asked to shoot an ad for Vancouver Fashion, but we were only given something like a 24-hour deadline. We scrambled and came up with a makeup artist, hair stylist, photographer, clothing, and location and had a blast doing it, and we thought it would make a great event. I developed the idea for about six months, then I met Dennise Kenny, a director/producer for Yaletown Entertainment. She was interviewing me for an episode of Weird Weddings and I told her about the idea I had for a show. She loved the idea and told her boss, Mike Collier, about it. He loved it and agreed to produce the pilot episode for a series. The series will be like Junkyard Wars meets Fashion Television.

MV: Tell us about the exciting guests you are bringing in from NYC.

CQ: Richie Rich and Traver Rains of Heatherette will be here to deliver an inspiring and entertaining keynote address to our audience at the Roundhouse Community Centre on Jul 26. The boys are also treating us to a rare show. For the first time in Canada, Hello Kitty Couture by Heatherette will be shown to the public, so an original NYC couture show here in Vancouver!

MV: How do you see Vancouver’s fashion scene? Is it growing or what?

CQ: Growing? It’s big. It’s just under-exposed and under-appreciated. However there are a lot of people who have been working very hard to compete with Montreal and Toronto. But unlike Montreal and Toronto, there isn’t the infrastructure to support local talent. Many designers and other fashionistas leave Vancouver to gain recognition. Designer Yumi Eto who is a hit in Japan; shoe designer John Fluevog who has a huge following in Europe and in the eastern United States; stylist Sima Kumar honed her skills in New York and London before returning to Vancouver; and stylist Serge Jean Laviolette who finally decided to leave Vancouver and return to his home of Montreal to pursue his fashion endeavors.

MV: What else keeps you occupied and interested?

CQ: At this time, this is all that keeps me occupied. I have discovered it’s hard to be well-rounded, there is just not enough time in the day.

MV: Gimme a brief summary of where you are from.

CQ: I grew up on a farm in rural Manitoba.

MV: After the 48 hours are up, what are your next plans.

CQ: Fortunately, the 48 hour clock doesn’t run out on us once this event is done. We are heading to the US to produce Snapshot USA in four cities, starting with Dallas, then on to San Francisco, Atlanta, and DC, then finally on to Montreal and back to Vancouver to start all over again!

MV: Finally: Why are gay men so goddamn fashionable?

CQ: That’s a question I’ve been asking for years. I think it has to do with a heightened sense of self, and a willingness to push boundaries and experiment, and ’cause you have to look good when you’re fabulous!