Dressing and undressing with London stylist Lisa Dymph Megens

Lisa Dymph Megens is a fashion stylist and casting director based between London and Amsterdam. She’s worked with superbrands like Calvin Klein, Nike, i-D and Vogue.

Here we get to know Lisa’s inspirations, creative processes and advice.

 

Tell us about your work as a stylist and casting director

I’ve always been obsessed with magazines since I was a little girl and when I was quite stubborn (very stubborn) about what I wanted to wear. The older I got the more I experimented with clothes. I grew up in a tiny village in the South of Holland and I always felt like the odd one out. Then one day there was this new fashion magazine called Elle Girl. It was different than the other girls magazines around at the time and I remember how much it inspired me to do my own thing (their slogan was ‘dare to be different’). I soon realised I wanted to be a part of the fashion world.

I studied fashion & branding at Amsterdam Fashion Institute mainly because they had a minor in making magazines. It was during my studies and internship at Dutch Vogue that I knew I wanted to be a stylist. For me, being a stylist meant creating images and during the last years of my studies, I realised how important your subject is and naturally I started to do casting as well. With casting you have the power to show different people, to show the world. That is really important to me as I’m really fed up with the ‘one kind’ of beauty standard.

Photography: Lotte van Raalte
Photography: Lotte van Raalte
Photography: Lotte van Raalte

How would you describe your aesthetic?

I hope its honest and pure. At least that is my goal. I’m also intrigued by shapes and colours, dressing and undressing, and the use of clothing on the body.

 

Tell us about the ‘in colours and clouds’ series 

This story was made for Glamcult and the issue’s theme was about pain, so when I got asked to do this editorial I immediately knew it had to be personal. For me pain is about the struggle of self-love and acceptance, and the realisation that will always come in waves. I asked my friend and photographer that I love to work with, Lotte van Raalte, to photograph this as I knew we share these thoughts.

We worked with the beautiful Niko, who we knew from the beginning could carry this story. I used clothing to highlight the body to show you can use it the way you want. We needed the nature and surroundings to our presence but also our vulnerability.

Photography: Lotte van Raalte

What do you want viewers to take away from your work?

I hope people feel a certain emotion. I think every creative person wants that.

 

What do you think makes a memorable photograph?

I really believe in capturing the moment. That doesn’t mean you cant take time to take a picture. Sometimes you have to wait for hours to capture one good moment but as soon as things feel forced I don’t believe it.

Photography: Lotte van Raalte

What is your creative process like?

It’s always going on, I cant really stop it and I’m always open to be inspired. If I have to work on something, I do research by going to a museum or exhibition and search for images and words to create the concept.

 

What other stylists, artists and photographers have inspired your work?

I’m very much inspired by daily life, art and documentary photography. I’m obsessed with the work of Matisse and Rothko as I love their use of colour. I also love Christo’s work and I’m very intrigued by land art as it makes you look at things in a way you never thought about before.

Photography wise I have so many hero’s but to name a few: William Eggleston, Rineke Dijkstra, Dana Lixenberg, Ed van der Elsken, Cuny Jannsen, Joel Meyerowitz, Gordon Parks, Alex Webb, George Plemper and so on.

Fashion wise I love to look at references from the 90s and early 2000s. I try to avoid getting inspired by recent work but obviously I do appreciate a lot of people right now as well. There are many good stylists but the work of Ibkamara who just became fashion editor at large at i-D is mind blowing, it goes beyond fashion, it’s art.

Photography: Lotte van Raalte

What are some of your favourite books on photography or fashion? 

I love the photography book I have from Alex Webb where his wife wrote stories with his photos.

 

How has social media played a role in your work? 

Instagram is an amazing platform to not only showcase your work but get in touch with people from all over the world. I feel it gave me a platform and an opportunity to tell my story.

Photography: Lotte van Raalte
Photography: Lotte van Raalte
Photography: Lotte van Raalte

What advice would you give yourself if you started all over again?

I think this is such a good question as I often give advice to people who want to assist me or want to work in fashion or as a stylist. My advice would be to study something different to fashion. Even though my study did help me think commercially, it took me a long time to really get back to the core of myself. I think that is so important because the only way you can be unique is to really think about what story you want to tell instead of looking at all these fashion images and trying to copy that. I did a minor in art history for example, which I think is more relevant. Sometimes I also wish I studied at Central Saint Martins because they really focus on telling your own story.

 

See more of Lisa’s work at lisadymphmegens.com and @lisadymph.

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