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Fashion Photographer Showcases Timeless Beauty by Creating Self-Portraits of All Decades Since 1900

You’ll think she discovered time travel.

1990’s – Lisa Frank, Daisies, and Boy Meets World

The 90’s saw the end of Saturday Morning Cartoons, and the real beginning of the Dot Com industry. Websites such as Yahoo, Google, and craigslist were launched. Kids who grew up in the 90’s enjoyed toys such as Beanie Babies, Super Soakers, and Easy Bake Ovens. Music in the 90’s ranged from the Seattle grunge sound made popular by Nirvana, to the melodic dance music of Britney Spears, the Backstreet Boys, and N*Sync. If you were cool in the 90’s, you’d be seen with tousled hair, flannel, Doc Martens, or a floral skater dress. If you were really cool, you’d wear Jelly Sandals with denim.

Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography
Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography

As a child of the 90’s, Hope didn’t have to look far for inspiration. While the 90’s grunge look is currently making a comeback, she wanted something specific to her own experiences and memories from the 90’s. When she thinks of the 90’s, she only had three things to say: “Lisa Frank, Daisies, and Boy Meets World”. Growing up with five older sisters, Hope found herself playing the part of photographer in a number of photo shoots throughout the years, something she much preferred to being on the other side of the lens. Her brother Caleb noticed her passion and ability as a photographer, and surprised her one night with her first camera, which she still uses today.

2000’s – The New Millennium

While the cell phone was invented several decades ago, it, along with other micro-computing advances defined the first decade of the new millennium. If you didn’t have a cell phone by the year 2000, chances are you had one by 2009. Technology got smaller, and the dot com boom continued. Websites including MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter went online for the first time during this decade. Shiny pants, cargo pants, and vertical striped pants were all the rage. If you didn’t have chunky highlights and shrugs, you weren’t cool enough for school.

Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography
Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography

Photography challenges aside, the issue of wardrobe was paramount to pulling this off. Hope confessed that while growing up, she would often times experience difficulty putting outfits together, which contributed to her desire to take photos as opposed to being in them. Instead of letting her fashion challenges overwhelm her and simply going with what was “in”, she began to study historical fashion trends as a tool for building her own unique style. With a combination of thrift store shopping and hand-me-downs from her five older sisters, she was ready to tackle over 100 years of fashion.

2010’s – The Decade of the Future (and Emoji Icons!)

The world we live in today has changed exponentially in the past century. We’ve seen the rise and fall of super power nations. We’ve seen significant shifts in culture and society. We can now wear and hold technology in the palms of our hands; technology with computing power that would require an entire warehouse just 50 years ago. We are living in the future with conveniences and lifestyles Hollywood once dreamed up in the Sci-fi movies of old. Have we as a culture really changed, or is history just repeating itself? The hipster trend borrows styles from a quarter century ago. Nerd glasses are now cool and vintage glasses are making a comeback, especially when worn with chinos. Beards are in and a phrase “Urban Lumberjack” now exists. Will future generations laugh at us, or will the 2010’s become the “hipster” of the 2070’s? Only time will tell.

Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography
Image courtesy Hope Renae Fischer, Copyright © 2015, Hope Renae Photography

Hope found the final photo of her series to be particularly daunting. Should she simply wear something out of her daily wardrobe? Could she simply grab her most recent selfie off of her smart phone? In the end, she wanted the final picture to represent something truly iconic that would withstand the test of time as future generations look back. In her opinion, minimalism was here to stay, at least for another 5 years.

As she reflected on the project, she noted various trends that had come and gone in women’s fashion over the years. While she was able to find beauty in every decade, she was saddened by many of the trends of the past. In the Victorian Era, for example, some women suffered permanent rib cage damage due to corsets that were too tight. In the 1920’s, women would bandage their breasts down to achieve the “fashionable” boy-like figure. In the 1960’s, in order to be considered beautiful, women needed to have a willowy thin figure, as she put it, a trend that sadly has tried to make a comeback in recent years. In a world where women’s fashion has contributed to countless eating disorders, low self-esteem, and other body image issues generation after generation, she’s thankful for the shifts in social thinking that are leading to the beautification of health itself. Health, after all, seems to be pretty fashionable right now.

Which decade photos were your favorites? If you could live in any decade, which would you choose, and why? Let us know in the comments section below, and please share this article with your friends if you enjoyed it! Make sure you visit and like Hope’s Facebook page. She does senior sessions, engagement shoots, family photos, and is always up for a creative challenge.

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Written by Andrew Fischer

Andrew Fischer is the Head Writer and Editor-in-Chief of PopMalt. He is an avid follower of all things pop and Internet culture, and works as Creative Director at NURV, a boutique creative multimedia and digital marketing company.


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