Thu | Jun 20, 2024

Burberry bets on Jamaica

Published:Friday | April 12, 2024 | 12:08 AM
Photographed by Tyrone Lebon at GoldenEye resort in St Mary, top model Kai Newman is among the four SAINT models featured in the latest Burberry advertising campaign.
Photographed by Tyrone Lebon at GoldenEye resort in St Mary, top model Kai Newman is among the four SAINT models featured in the latest Burberry advertising campaign.
Post-shoot at GoldenEye in St Mary, Burberry Chief Creative Officer Daniel Lee (middle row, fourth right) and the campaign’s  casting director Finlay Macaulay (third right) shared the frame with SAINT International models; actor and musician Sheldon Shep
Post-shoot at GoldenEye in St Mary, Burberry Chief Creative Officer Daniel Lee (middle row, fourth right) and the campaign’s casting director Finlay Macaulay (third right) shared the frame with SAINT International models; actor and musician Sheldon Shepherd (middle row, right); and other members of the cast and crew in a December after-party photo op.
SAINT International’s fresh face Abigail Lloyd co-stars in the new Burberry spring/summer 2024 collection campaign.
SAINT International’s fresh face Abigail Lloyd co-stars in the new Burberry spring/summer 2024 collection campaign.
First a Wales Bonner x Adidas global ad campaign, now SAINT’s male star Selah McHail can add Burberry’s spring/summer 2024 ad campaign to his CV.
First a Wales Bonner x Adidas global ad campaign, now SAINT’s male star Selah McHail can add Burberry’s spring/summer 2024 ad campaign to his CV.
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Jamaica’s tropical allure and the captivating beauty of its models come into sharp focus for Burberry’s just-launched spring/summer 2024 global advertising campaign.

The British luxury fashion house’s new collection drop, with its accompanying visuals shot on the island’s northeast coastline, sees SAINT supermodel Kai Newman; the agency’s 2023 Female Fashion Face winner, Dru Campbell, fresh from her stunning debut at the European fall/winter 2024 designer collections and the agency’s rising stars Selah McHail and Abigail Lloyd among the global cast of faces presenting Burberry’s artistic take on seasonal wardrobe must-haves.

Integrally involved in the Jamaica-set ad campaign was SAINT chief executive officer Deiwght Peters. He shared with Living that he was contacted last October and subsequently recruited by the team from the iconic English label to assist in their visioning process. Peters was tasked with scouting local faces, including pitching those from his agency’s model roster. He conducted a series of open castings that saw hundreds of hopefuls packing into The Jamaica Pegasus hotel’s Alexander Bustamante Suite’s banquet space back in November in response to his social media broadcast ‘seeking models, musicians, influencers, skaters, and surfers’.

“To say I was surprised when Burberry reached out, would be an understatement,” Peters recalled. “Having the island chosen by a luxury fashion house as the backdrop to their campaign, and Jamaicans being part of the narrative is a positive depiction on film on all counts. It also reinforces that glamour and fantastic locations can be associated with Brand Jamaica.”

Peters’ contribution was a crucial complement to an overseas shortlist of British, African, Asian, and other Caribbean faces winnowed down by the project’s casting directors Finlay Macaulay and Anita Bitton. In addition to his four SAINT models who made the final cut, Peters disclosed that actor and musician Sheldon Shepherd also made the final cut as the fifth Jamaican featured in the new campaign currently enjoying traction across multiple media platforms worldwide.

Team Burberry jetted into the island back in December with the brand’s chief creative officer Daniel Lee in tow as team lead in both oversight and styling capacities. They camped at GoldenEye Resort in St Mary, which serves as the scenic backdrop of the campaign. Photographed by English photographer Tyrone Lebon, who was also behind the camera for Burberry’s fall/winter 2023 campaign shot in the Isle of Skye in Scotland last year, the warmer climes of the Caribbean paradise sets the tone for the latest Burberry collection taking the brand’s heritage elements in a fresh direction.

Adding flourishes to the seasonal theme, prints and embroideries of English garden flowers and summer fruits also decorate the pieces. Canopied motifs of lush fauna, natural textures and freshwater vistas recur throughout the campaign visuals, a striking contrast to the brand’s traditional knight clip and shield and ‘b’ buckle iconography which pepper the English-garden and fruit-themed wardrobe. For Newman, who incidentally also shot Diotima’s Spring 2024 ad campaign as its solo face at GoldenEye two months ago, working on the Burberry campaign on home turf felt like kismet. “I feel elated and blessed to have been part of it,” she shared with The Gleaner. “It was amazing shooting in Jamaica with my SAINT family as well my international model friends like Mayowa Nicholas. There was so much fun and laughter during the shoot and the after party, food and vibes were immaculate, everyone connected, so it was so special.”

Meanwhile Bob Marley: One Love co-star Shepherd expressed deep pride with his Burberry get. “I have always enjoyed creativity in fashion. To be given the opportunity to be featured in this campaign is more for my mother than for me. She always wants me to do more with fashion and modelling and loves this kind of thing more than I do. In fact, she would love to be a model.

“Burberry is a trendsetter and an original in the fashion game. For me to be aligned with such a well known and loved brand in this capacity is new for me and a welcome addition to my resume,” added Shepherd, no stranger to global advertising campaigns, having starred alongside his No Maddz bandmates and track icon Usain Bolt in a 2011 PUMA campaign. Recalling a now treasured memory from the GoldenEye shoot, the multi-hyphenate star said: “It would have be watching Sister Nancy (who was also cast for the Burberry campaign) strike poses for the camera. She is a legendary ragamuffin goddess.”

Elsewhere, SAINT’s fast-rising star McHail reminisced that his Burberry shoot experience was an exceptional one. “GoldenEye is such a beautiful property, there’s such a natural mystic to it, I could totally understand why Bob Marley would’ve spent so much time there. Everyone was in sort of a cheerful flow state, I could tell great art was being made but at the same time we were all having so much fun,” he said.

lifestyle@gleanerjm.com