After launching the now famous "Sartorialist" blog in 2005, Scott Schuman has emerged as an influential force in the world of fashion. A self-taught photographer, Schuman shoots for publications including French Vogue, American GQ, Fantastic Man and Elle, and a growing list of advertising clients. He has also shown his work at the New York photo gallery The Danziger Projects and appeared in the GAP Style Icon campaign in the fall of 2008. He has been named the number one fashion photography trend by American Photo magazine, as well as one of Time magazine’s top 100 design influencers. Penguin published an anthology of his favorite photographs in 2009. The hardcover collection is aptly entitled, "The Sartorialist."
Question: What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome?
Scott Schuman: The fact that I always thought that I knew better than the people I was working for. That’s not good. That’s not a good thing to think that you always know better than the people that are your bosses and it always created a problem for me. I always thought I had a good point of view on this, that and whatever and it turned out to be okay, but you know at some point it always created problems for me working corporately and so at some point my dad it can’t always be them, so at some point it’s got to be you, you’re the only thing that’s consistent in this and that’s hard. You don’t want to hear that from your dad, but I think it was probably true and I think it helped me realize that either I got to put up or shut up and so I’m glad that when I went out and worked on my own I don’t have all the answers, but you know I really had to push myself to handle all the different areas because it’s not just photography. It’s running the business and it’s accounting, all the different kind of things, so you know now I have the challenge of actually trying to go out there and learn a lot of different things to make it all keep going.
Recorded on December 2, 2009