YAWEN EVAN SUN WRITES – ‘Street Snap’ was invented for the purpose of sharing the unique and creative fashion styles from the street. It is a tool of discovering beauty and a method of spreading diversity of style. Street Snap wonderfully reminds us that fashion has no limit.
And so a group of young people in China saw the great potential benefits behind Street Snap and therewith came across a way of becoming social media influencers and making their fortunes. I recently interviewed ‘Dan Dan Street Snap’, a prominent Snap Street staff photographer and also a Street Snap blogger on TikTok.
Q: How would you describe the Street Snap industry in China?
A: It’s about fashion, benefit and cooperation.
Q: Why did Street Snap become such a big thing in China?
A: Various reasons– I think it all started from the phenomenon that we live under huge pressure.
Q: True! So we need something positive and interesting to relieve daily pressure?
A: Exactly. Why are people obsessed with social media and especially TikTok (an app for short-form mobile videos)? Because they are looking for something new and different—something they might not own in everyday life. For example, fashion: Fashion is a way to express your personality. In the street snap, you see a lot of people in the clothes with very special design walking around.
Q: They look so cool! And I saw some of them were in Han Chinese clothes.
A: Right. Who doesn’t want to wear whatever they want. But you can’t really go to work or go to school in Han Chinese clothes right? So our mission, as a street snap photographer, was to find out those people who are willing to present their fashion attitudes in front of the public and encourage our followers to bravely and freely express themselves at least during their spare time.
A: That is very inspiring. And you also mentioned about benefits and cooperation. Tell me more about those two points.
Q: I usually categorize my models into two categories: random people and arranged models. While filming and shooting the random people, my purpose was just about spreading fashion. As for the arranged models……
A: They are all about benefits and cooperation?
Q: Not all of them but yeah, most of them. That’s how we make money. For those who wished to become internet celebrities, street snap is a good way for them to attract attention and get more followers. So don’t be too surprised if you see a girl walking on the street and suddenly she starts to dance and do cartwheel. I would say most of the situations were planned. And if you have paid attention to some of my short videos and pictures, I will always put a link below. That is the link for purchasing a product the model is wearing.
Q: I see…… So it’s like an advertisement. Street snap became a new approach to marketing products.
A: That’s right. And that is where cooperation comes from. If the internet celebrities have signed agents and companies, I work with the companies.
Q: Wow, I think I just found a new way to interpret “Fashion has no limit.” Do you think the commercialization of Street Snap in China is negative?
A: Absolutely not. I think people are smart. They found a way to make money and create wealth. Street snap and fashion give people a way to advertise their products, even themselves. When the unemployment rate is rising in traditional industry, we found our own way to shine. It all thanks to the Internet.
I’m glad that I had this conversation with Dan Dan Street Snap because he showed me how young people in China try to develop their career and make themselves valuable. I see how my generation tries to make contributions to society and the world. We will prove that we are not spoiled; we are creative and strong!
Yawen Evan Sun is an LMU senior who majors in Theater Arts and minors in Film, Television and Media study. A native and citizen of China, she has just been named Asian Fashion Editor of Asia Media International – the first Chinese national to be appointed to a top editor’s position at AMI.