Harry Styles, Lizzo, Childish Gambino (pause for appreciation) besides from all being top legends, what these three artists also have in common is their ability to create banging music videos that go alongside their sweet tunes. Even though we no longer sit in front of the telly and watch hours and hours of MTV, music videos are still a massive part of our culture and create conversations about various topics, one surrounding what artists are wearing.
It may sometimes look like these artists rock up with something they've grabbed from their wardrobe, but if that were the case, there would be a lot of people out of their jobs. With the Instagram world that we live in, anyone can appear to be a stylist, but the ones that can create an image for someone else that seems untouched and organic is where the magic lies.
Music videos are the place for these stylists to get creative and spice things up a bit, and you probably haven't even considered them. Well, here at OOS we've decided to take you under our wing and open your eyes to the world of music video styling. Now, we won't lie, we aren't pros when it comes to the music video world, so we've drafted in some help — introducing a styling assistant to the stars, Emily-Elizabeth Clarke.
Hailing from Hackney, this 22-year-old has been smashing the styling game for the past couple of years and has now found herself working under stylist Holly Wood. Clarke took some time out from her sunny afternoon in lockdown to chat to us. The fashion industry can sometimes appear to be surrounded by a thick fog, making it hard to let new people in and learn, so let us create a peephole for you; thank us later.
Always interested in styling, Clarke found it initially tricky to find her path into the fashion industry. Initially starting with sustainable fashion gigs like working on projects for Cancer Research, Depop, Oxfam and Bernardos – the young stylist has now transitioned into celebrity styling.
When explaining the difference between a standard photoshoot and a music video shoot Clarke says, "I'd say the number one difference is the time pressure. It's a very pressurised environment because you have to keep to a shot schedule and get every single shot. After all, if you don't, the video won't be finished, and it won't make sense." She continues, "it's kind of like shooting a mini film really, there are so many different scenes in different locations."
Music video shoots allow for the opportunity to be more whimsical with wardrobe and explore different characters and personalities for the artists. However, styling for a music video presents its difficulties, Clarke explains, "it's often harder to pull for music videos because brands want recognition, which often you can't provide in that setting." Trying to arrange clothes for any shoot is one of the tricky parts that unfortunately only gets easier with the relationships that form with PRs and designers. It's even harder to loan clothes off people in a music video setting as it can be unclear what brand is being worn by the artist, but when magic moments happen, it makes it all worthwhile.
One event which comes to Clarke when thinking about her top moment of her styling career so far is, "when Hi, It's Me by Ashnikko won Best Pop Video at the UK MVAS, that was sick." Artists Ashnikko and Bree Runway have become two of Clarke's most worked on clients, and winning an award for a video she worked on is quite the career highlight at the tender age of 22.
With regards to style highlights, Bree Runway's 2ON video is up there for the stylist, "we had a shot where Bree and a body double keep switching looks. So it looks like there's two of Bree and they're dancing in sync." Clarke continues," She's wearing this custom red tartan two-piece with super exaggerated shoulders, and the dancer is wearing this all-denim look with denim jewellery and denim shoes, and it's just everything."
To finish off our chat, Clarke had a moment fantasising about who she would like to style in the future, "I'd love to style Dua Lipa because she likes taking style risks and her image is super quirky at the moment with the two-tone hair. I think her style has developed so quickly and so well and actually in a really short amount of time."
By Niamh Rooney
Images courtesy of Emily-Elizabeth Clarke and Zeinab Batchelor