Tom Ford fed up with 'prudishness' in fashion advertising
Tom Ford is tired of "prudish" advertising and wants to see more boundary-pushing campaigns.
The 55-year-old served stints as creative director at Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent before launching his eponymous brand in 2006, and has more recently delved into filmmaking with Oscar-nominated movies A Single Man and Nocturnal Animals.
As well as his glamorous garments and sexy ensembles, Ford has courted attention throughout his career for his provocative campaigns, including an ad featuring a nude woman holding a bottle of the perfume between her legs, and he now wishes to see less censorship.
"In advertising we've become so prudish," he told The Cut. "So even as television and language go forward, you can still not show a woman's nipple in many magazines. You can show a breast, but not a nipple! To me a breast without a nipple is more perverse and is really creepy, but if I do those things, no magazine will run them, so I can't push images too far or they'll be rejected."
Ford now splits his time between London and his studio in Los Angeles, and feels that he is less restricted in his ideas when it comes to creating advertising images for magazines and billboards in Europe.
And he still finds that American companies are much more conservative than people may think.
"When we'd shoot an ad campaign, we used to shoot for the world, and then we'd shoot a Middle East version because there are certain rules, like a man can't touch a woman and everyone has to be clothed. But now we shoot three versions: We shoot the world version, the conservative version, and the Middle East version. The conservative version is for America," he shared.
The designer added that he's all for "equal-opportunity objectification" and doesn't understand why men aren't used to sell products more. But at the same time, Ford is a wary of purely adopting the "sex sells" adage, and admits even he's been "more romantic lately".