"It feels like the future"

Fashion photographer Ian Hippolyte describes how his move to Canon's mirrorless EOS R System has helped him to fall in love with photography again.
A portrait of dancer, artist and musician Tyrone Isaac-Stuart standing against a dark background taken on a Canon EOS R5.

Fashion photographer Ian Hippolyte is particularly smitten with the possibilities offered by the Canon EOS R5's Face/Eye Detection. "The thing that stands out to me is the eye and face tracking. It just makes my life so much easier." This picture of multidisciplinary dancer, artist and musician Tyrone Isaac-Stuart was taken on a Canon EOS R5 with a Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R and a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM lens at 1/4 sec, f/8 and ISO160. © Ian Hippolyte

There's a lot to be said for keeping up with technology. Maintaining a close eye on the latest innovations can provide creative possibilities that expand horizons and advance your techniques. A new piece of kit can help get you where you want to go quicker and make feasible something previously seen as impossible.

For London-based fashion photographer Ian Hippolyte, keeping things current is a constant throughout his career. As a child, he eagerly sought out the latest kit to improve his early videos. His preference for the contemporary served him well – over 80,000 YouTube followers will testify to that.

His biggest switch so far has been to migrate from Canon DSLRs to the mirrorless EOS R System but, he admits, it was far easier than he had originally imagined. "Coming from DSLR to mirrorless seemed like a big jump at first, but when I actually used the mirrorless camera, I found it wasn't," Ian says. "It felt very familiar. I've been using Canon for years, so it was natural for me to stick with Canon and move to mirrorless. The transition has been completely smooth."

Ian previously opted for the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV paired with a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM lens, but his recent experience of using the Canon EOS R5 with the Canon RF 28-70mm F2L USM left such an impression that the switch was made permanent.

"It feels like the future. It feels updated," he says. "The body is smaller, so it feels less cumbersome to hold. But there's also the image quality. I knew I was going to get great image quality and the colours were going to be strong, vibrant and true to life."

Fashion photographer Ian Hippolyte stands in front of a panelled wall.

Free up your creativity

While the EOS R System may feel familiar, there are some notable changes that make the cameras stand out. One of the most impressive is the Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus system, which in the EOS R5 features 5,940 selectable AF positions covering virtually the entire frame. And the Face/Eye Detection capability gives portrait and fashion photographers previously unthinkable levels of autonomy.

"The eye and face tracking has completely changed the way I shoot," Ian explains. "It's helped speed up my shoots and it's helped me focus on my subject rather than on what focus point I'm using. I just focus on the subject and have the camera track their movements. Especially working in fashion, where there's a lot of movement with models walking, jumping or doing something energetic, being able to track their eyes and get them really sharp is so important."

The face/eye detection also aids shallow depth of field portraits where accurate focusing is all-important. And just as crucial for Ian is the Canon EOS R5's 5-axis In-Body Image Stabilisation (IBIS), which shows its value both in the studio and out in the field.

"I do a lot of studio work, but I also work on location," he explains. "A lot of the time I shoot handheld because I don't like to be tied down by a tripod. I prefer to have the flexibility to follow the subject, move closer to them, step back or get lower on the floor. I move quite a lot when I shoot, so the EOS R5's stabilisation definitely helps me make sure everything is really sharp."

The Never Break Your Flow EOS R System logo.

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The award-winning EOS R System offers a highly intuitive approach to photography and video, working seamlessly with you to keep you focused on your subject and craft.
A close-up of a model's face, framing the mouth, nose and left eye, taken on a Canon EOS R5.

Ian's passion for fashion rests on the team effort needed to create eye-catching imagery. "It's the fantasy of it all," he says. "Being able to create these scenes and bring together all these people with different talents – styling, hair, makeup, set design, the model and myself all coming together to create beautiful imagery. That's what really draws me to fashion." Taken on a Canon EOS R5 with a Canon RF 100mm F2.8L MACRO IS USM lens at 1/200 sec, f/8 and ISO200. © Ian Hippolyte

A portrait taken on a Canon EOS R5 of a model dressed in dark blue caught in motion against a white background.

Sometimes it's about the clothes, sometimes it's about the makeup or the hair. Whatever the subject, Ian believes the essence of a good fashion portrait is "telling a story and conveying emotion," he says. "And there are so many different ways you can do that. Whether your subject looks really strong or vulnerable, there's something really beautiful about being able to bring that out of someone." Taken on a Canon EOS R5 with a Canon RF 28-70mm F2L USM lens at 59mm, 1/200 sec, f/5.6 and ISO320. © Ian Hippolyte

Range of lens options

Ian's move to mirrorless has also opened the door to the range of RF lenses, while also retaining the option to use his EF lenses. "I've used both the RF lenses and my EF lenses with the Mount Adapter EF-EOS R and the quality of both has been great. Some people have reservations about using the adapter because it might affect the speed at which the camera communicates with the lens, but I haven't noticed anything like that. It's been great."

He continues: "I love using the RF 28-70mm F2L USM, because being able to go down to f/2 with that zoom focal length is amazing. Having that shallow depth of field – you don't really see that with a lot of zoom lenses. I love working with zooms in general because it speeds up my workflow as I don't have to change lenses all the time.

"Especially when you're working with models, you don't want to stop to change something. You want to be focused on the subject and what you're trying to capture. So being able to zoom in and out and have that flexibility really helps."

A black and white portrait, taken on a Canon EOS R5, of a figure in white resting their cheek on their hand, a saxophone in front of them.

When it comes to cameras, Ian has a very clear idea of what he wants. "When you're taking photos of people, you want to build a connection with them," he explains. "So what I look for in a camera is one where I don't have to think too much about what the camera is doing, but rather something that's going to give me the best quality, be reliable and be consistent. I want a camera that allows me to build a connection with my subjects to get the shots I need." Taken on a Canon EOS R5 with a Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R and a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM lens at 55mm, 1/200 sec, f/5.6 and ISO200. © Ian Hippolyte

Bigger file sizes, more options

The Canon EOS R5's full-frame CMOS sensor captures image files packed full of data. Paired with the DIGIC X image processor, the EOS R System delivers post-processing options alongside detail and clarity. And the prospect of capturing 45MP images opens up a raft of potential that Ian has been quick to exploit.

"Having such a high-resolution camera is really beneficial because it gives me the flexibility to crop in if I need to," he explains. "Sometimes you're never really sure how the photo is going to be used, so it's good to be able to shoot a little wider so that you have options. But you also need the image quality to be able to crop into a tighter shot or even a detailed shot. That's something that really stood out to me with the EOS R5 and the higher resolution it offers."

Switching from stills to video

Ian's move to mirrorless echoes his journey as a teenager, upgrading from a camcorder to the seemingly endless possibilities of DSLR cameras and, in particular, the Canon EOS 600D (now succeeded by the Canon EOS 850D) in an effort to upgrade his videos – a move that also took him on the first steps of his journey into imagery. Now, 10 years later, the Canon EOS R5's video capabilities, which include cinematic 12-bit 8K RAW video, present a much greater leap but with the same hybrid flexibility.

"Photography is my main focus, but there are times when I've been asked to also create videos because clients often look to get the most out of a shoot," says Ian. "Being able to do both with the same kit is so beneficial. Having a camera like the EOS R5, which can shoot amazing stills but also 4K and even 8K video, has been incredible.

"It also allows me to work with clients that I wouldn't have been able to work with before. I've done shoots with musicians where I've done a press shoot and then recorded a live session where they're playing their instruments, and just handheld the camera or maybe put it on a gimbal."

Ian Hippolyte is a talented photographer who has continually sought out innovation to help widen his photographic boundaries. But in the EOS R System, he's found something of even greater value. "Working with the mirrorless system and the EOS R5 in particular has helped me fall in love with photography again," he says. "I'm excited to use the new kit and features. Features like the AF system have made my job so much easier. It gets me excited to get back on set or in the studio and continue shooting."

A model is bathed in red light against a black background

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Ian Hippolyte's kitbag

The key kit fashion pros use to take their photographs

Fashion photographer Ian Hippolyte holding a Canon EOS R5 camera up to his eye.


Canon EOS R5

The EOS R5's uncompromising performance will revolutionise your photography and filmmaking. "The EOS R5 is perfect for me as it offers amazing image quality in a small body," says Ian. "The autofocus is so advanced and works incredibly in all shooting conditions."


Canon RF 28-70mm F2L USM

An advanced L-series zoom featuring a very fast f/2 aperture and delivering exceptional image quality. Ian says: "This lens allows me to work in low-light conditions and have the flexibility to shoot wide or zoom in."


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