Day 240 / 365

When I started this blog I wanted to try to match the aesthetic of mainstream blogs. The eco and ethical industry has long held a reputation of being dowdy and boring, and I knew that if I wanted a chance to share my words with those drawn to aesthetics (as we all are) I had to garner their attention through my images.

In my eyes, for eco and ethical brands, the same rules apply. In order to shift consumption towards sustainable brands, customers need to be provided with the clean, aesthetic and identifiable imagery that matches that of fast fashion trendsetters like Nasty Gal, Forever 21, Asos, Free People, Urban Outfitters and so on. In order to achieve that, brands need to be as much committed to aesthetic as they are to sustainability. The formula developed by the fury of fast fashion genuinely works, we just have to mirror it and adjust the details to make it conscious.

This means sustainable brands need to develop a clear brand identity; hiring photographers, graphic designers and web designers who can create in a way which will allow the brand to flourish. Thus far, there are very few conscious companies achieving this, and even fewer doing it well.

A few months ago, I got an email from a Swedish woman named Linda Grönlund who is working to address these issues with the creation of her aptly named Fair Photo Agency.  The agency will act as a medium to unite sustainable brands with conscious photographers who can create impactful imagery which will help the brand find their footing in the online jungle and reach audiences beyond those actively seeking conscious lifestyle commerce.

Both my husfriend and I had heartwarming and informative conversations with Linda who along with sharing our vision for a greener future, taught us about "Flexonomy", which might provide a solution to the second problem holding the sustainable industry behind. Lack of money.

Flexonomy offers flexible pricing, meaning the client decides what they can afford based on industry standards of the service they're receiving. It's based on honesty and transparency, and is a philosophy which is inspired by Charles Eisenstein's "Gift Economy", explained in Ian MacKenzie’s short film “Sacred Economics with Charles Eisenstein”, which Linda sent over to me.

This is something I need to learn more about, something I need to consider for my own writing and something which not only gives me hope for this money-centric world - but also for the industry which without a seismic shift might not discover the strength and speed it needs to grow.

Throughout this #GoneGreen2016 series, my husfriend, Shane has been taking the majority of the photos for the blog. He's a photographer by trade and a talented one taboot and for a few years now has been trying to move away from shooting fast fashion or luxury fashion photos - collaborating instead with sustainable brands who share his conscious lifestyle and vision of a better world.

Fair Photo Agency will provide him (and others like him) with the access he needs to continue to make a living with his creative talents while collaborating with brands which he would be honoured to be aligned with and passionate to promote.

The best way to make this possibility a reality is to get involved. If you're a consumer, purchase from sustainable brands to support this circular story with your vote for a brighter future, if you're a brand or a photographer head over to the website and sign up to be a part of this magnetic movement by clicking the link:
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Images: 1 | 2 & 3 Shane Woodward