Band of Outsiders Designer Scott Sternberg On His Brand's New Frank Ocean Campaign

Frank Ocean Polaroid - P 2013
Photo by Scott Sternberg/Courtesy of Band of Outsiders

Frank Ocean Polaroid - P 2013

The L.A. brand's latest Polaroid ads star Grammy winner Frank Ocean and, says the label's founder, were "inspired by protest."

Frank Ocean is more than a Grammy Award-winning singer and front row Fashion Week guest, he's also the new face of Band of Outsiders' spring 2013 men's campaign ads -- a series of Polaroids shot by the label's founder and creative director, former CAA agent Scott Sternberg.

"We started a dialogue about the shoot a while back, at the same that he was working on the concept for his Grammy performance," Sternberg tells The Hollywood Reporter. "He had a very specific, inspired idea to wear a yellow tux against that video backdrop, which seemed like a worthy challenge to try to get right."

The video backdrop turned out to be Forest Gump. And the yellow tux looked right, indeed. 

This time on his Band of Outsiders bandwagon, Ocean went more mainstream, sporting a custom spring 13 black tux in the Sternberg-shot Polaroid pictures taken at the Los Angeles Times building in downtown LA.

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"It was inspired by the idea of protest, and counterculture images from 1950s and '60s photographers like Wallace Berman and Dennis Stock," says Sternberg. "The look for the shoot was derived from that show, but each individual look was tweaked so they were closer to Frank's style."

Images from the campaign were posted on the Band of Outsiders websiteTumblr and Instagram accounts Wednesday with an announcement that more photos would be released through Sunday.

Sternberg, who was a photography minor in college, first professionally utilized the Polaroid 600 film that has become his brand's signature back in 2007 when he shot Jason Schwartzman for that year's holiday collection. Amy Adams, Josh Brolin and Michelle Williams have since appeared on vintage film for the L.A.-based line. 

But why did he start shooting with the instant medium in the first place? 

"It was a practical choice. The film was cheap, I could shoot alone, and the look felt exactly how I wanted these campaigns to feel -- like a daydream," says the designer, who is rumored to be working on a book featuring all of the Polaroid campaign images he's taken so far to coincide with Band of Outsiders' 10th anniversary later this year. 

"The medium becomes even more of an asset when we're shooting someone busy and famous. The setups are quick so we can get a lot in, and there's something about having the physical images there that helps gain a sense of trust. At this point, it probably doesn't matter what medium we use to shoot these, but I'll definitely miss doing it this way when the film runs out."

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See more shots of Ocean in Band of Outsiders' spring 2013 men's campaign, below: