A Visual Life: The Sartorialist

Posted by Alex

Scott Schumann, also know as the Sartorialist, is the subject of this short and sweet documentary by Intel. It’s very well done and shows some cool behind-the-scenes of Scott’s process. I always wondered how he approaches people on the street! When I was in Japan, I saw some extremely cool fashion walking around, but was usually too nervous to ask people for a photograph (though I will say, asking in Japanese was 100% successful because they were usually laughing at me). Anyway, this documentary is terrific, and short enough that even the most ADD of you can probably make it through.

You know you never know what it is, what that the thing is that draws you to that person, but you just let it happen. It seems odd, but it’s almost like going out there and letting yourself fall in love everyday. – Scott Schumann

20 Comments Leave A Comment


Logan says:

January 6, 2011 at 6:35 pm

I’ve loved his website for years and I respect his bravery. Walking up to strangers is incredibly hard. The only thing that baffles me about him is why he’s using the oldest Blogger template known to man, or Blogger at all. I almost hate going there because it’s so ugly. Is that bad? Either way, great documentary.


Alex says:

January 6, 2011 at 6:45 pm

@Logan — Haha it’s funny you mention the Blogger thing. I had written a little paragraph about that and deleted it earlier. Anyway it baffles me too. They MUST be compensating him somehow. There is absolutely no reason why such a high profile site wouldn’t have moved to a custom domain (or a different platform…) by now. Something is going on behind the scenes if you ask me.

Then again who knows, if it ain’t broke…


Chris says:

January 6, 2011 at 8:11 pm

Thanks for sharing this. The documentary is very inspirational, but Schumanns’ work is killer. I fall in to the same category of chickening out when I should just ask people for a picture. I know I miss so many great moments that way. I think this has inspired me to change.


Jon says:

January 6, 2011 at 11:22 pm

I really like his photos, but he has a strange obsession with his body. I saw him give a presentation once and he kept talking about how he works out all the time. No joke, he must have said 4 or 5 times how people always compliment him on how muscular his chest is. It was really bizarre.


Lee says:

January 6, 2011 at 11:43 pm

I respect his decision to use the default blogger template. It’s, imho, one of the reasons why his stuff is so good. He spends his time taking photos, not tweaking a design.

I’ve done the same with my site and posterous, although I’m yet to get to the content heh.


Logan says:

January 7, 2011 at 5:59 am

@Alex – You might be right about the payroll thing. But then again, you can tell from the few-and-far-between posts when he actually writes something that he doesn’t really care about technicality. He probably learned how to use Blogger a hundred years ago and never stopped because he’s too busy flying from Milan to Tokyo.

@Jon – I totally believe that story 100%. He’s a little strange. I also find his relationship with Garance a little weird and kind of irksome. I stopped going to his site as frequently because of the Garance-fanboy posts.


Philip says:

January 7, 2011 at 10:24 am

As a long time fan of Schumann and as a photographer I really appreciated this post. I always wondered how he approached his subjects. Thanks so much for sharing this.


bitbin says:

January 8, 2011 at 3:22 am

I had to check out his EXIF data! Looks like he is using a lovely 5d Mark2 with an fixed 80mm 1.2 lens.

That should do it! I have the 5d Mark2 as well, think this may have inspired me to try out this kind of photography here in the UK.


Kevin A... says:

January 9, 2011 at 2:24 pm

I fell out of my chair laughing hysterically when he slowly took off his glasses and said the quote about falling in love…

And when are they (apple and friends) going to stop using such douchey music in these types of videos?

Other than that I really liked the video…


chico says:

January 10, 2011 at 2:48 am

Nice short of the Sartorialist. I would love to know the full specs of the lens mounted on his Canon. Is it really an 85mm prime lens?




steve says:

January 14, 2011 at 8:25 am

seems too wide in the video to be an 85mm but i could be thrown off. whatever it is, great images and very well executed concept.


jensen says:

February 11, 2011 at 8:27 am

i remember he said he was using a 5d mk1 and a 50mm lens, i think 1.4
but that was some time ago
not surprised that he’s got an mkii now
he also mentioned not to get too obsessed with “the best camera” and equipment etc.