Marks and Spencer, Britain’s biggest retailers, has gathered an amazing array of women for their A/W advert campaign to be captured by the lens of Annie Leibovitz. We look behind the scenes of one shoot on the River Thames.
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LONDON, United Kingdom  Marks and Spencer Autumn Winter 2013 A/W Advert Campaign has commissioned the legendary fashion photographer, Annie Leibovitz to shot what is meant to be the celebration of the Nation’s leading ladies across a variety of industries and ages.

Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne, Executive Director Marketing and Business Development at M&S said, we wanted this campaign to signal a new and confident tone of voice to introduce Autumn. Annie was the perfect choice to shoot a campaign of this magnitude. Her unmistakable, signature style, with its truly dramatic aesthetic was exactly what we needed to communicate the essence of the campaign and of the new M&S.

Marks and Spencer Autumn Winter 2013 A/W Advert Campaign

Teaming up with Hannah Teare as main stylist, Julien d’Ys and Val Garland in charge for the hair & make-up, and under the creative direction of RKCR Y&R agency, Leibovitz opted for four shoots set in very typical English environments to feature the quintessentially hero product categories of the collection. The shootings involved many people and the settings were very busy, considering the importance of the campaign in response of falling clothing sales, and the calibre of the “cast”, who are all industry leaders in their respective fields.

The shoot we like the most, representing the wintercoat range, has been shot on a boat on the River Thames overlooking the beauty of the iconic London landmark, the Tower Bridge. In this scene, the models are wearing coats chosen to represent their personality in a variety of colours, textures, styles and poses.

Tracey Emin confessed right after the shooting, “I really liked my outfit and actually wore the red coat on my way home!”. The other shots features the British countryside for the Per Una ultra-feminine range, a London artists’ studio for the London calling playful trend and a typical countryhouse for the “dresses” line.

Marks and Spencer Autumn Winter 2013
Nicola Adam and Helen Mirren in a behind-the-scenes moment of the shooting

An Amazing Array of Women

Let’s have a closer look to the line-up chosen for the project, which boasts the following 12 iconic personalities:

  • Nicola Adams, Britain’s first female Olympic boxing champion, who won a gold medal and earned an MBE thanks to her unsurpassable ability.
  • Monica Ali, one of Britain’s best-selling authors whose moving tale about ethnic adaptation, Brick Lane, was shortlisted for the Booker Prize.
  • Helen Allen, 2011 Nurse of the Year, having created an award-winning volunteer programme that facilitate mobility for nurses to Africa.
  • Darcey Bussell, the retired principal Ballerina at the Royal Ballet.
  • Grace Coddington, US Vogue’s inimitable creative director, the striking visionary behind the magazine’s fashion pages.
  • Karen Elson, the globally acclaimed supermodel who has left the marks on numerous fashion magazines covers and catwalks.
  • Tracey Emin, the indomitable Artist and Professor of Drawing at the Royal Academy.
  • Ellie Goulding, the multiplatinum Brit Award winning singer-songwriter.
  • Helene Mirren, the Oscar-winning Dame celebrated for her incredible portrayal of the Queen among the others.
  • Laura Mvula, director of a community gospel choir, as well as an award-winning singer.
  • Katie Piper, burns victim, charity campaigner and all-around national sweetheart, whose determination and bravery are of inspiration to us all.
  • Jasmine Whitbread, CEO of Save the Children International.

It is the first time that M&S, Britain’s biggest retailers, goes for such an amazing array of women for their advert campaigns. In the past M&S had already partnered with well-known brand ambassadors. For example, previous adverts had starred Essex supermodel and member of LCM, London Collections Men, David Gandy as the face of the Italian inspired “Collezione”; and English model and actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley as the face of the women’s collection. Her success was so great that she is now the creative mind behind a M&S lingerie line named after her.

Marks and Spencer Autumn Winter 2013
A sneak peek of the latest M&S collection that stars, among the others, Tracey Emin and Helen Allen.