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Annie Leibovitz Goes Native for Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton Ad in August 2014 Vanity Fair

I love the new Series 1 campaign for Louis Vuitton, with photography by Annie Leibovitz, Bruce Weber and Juergen Teller.

At first, when I saw the print creative in the Sunday New York Times, I didn’t think much about it — a brand like Louis Vuitton enlisting a prominent photographer such as Leibovitz for advertising work isn’t unusual. She’s been collaborating with Louis Vuitton on commercial work for years. But when I saw the campaign in the pages of Vanity Fair, a magazine that lists her on the masthead as a contributing photographer, I liked it even more. It didn’t require copy saying “advertorial” or “sponsored” at the top: Louis Vuitton’s brand is prominently stamped in the lower right-hand corner and copy below the photos tells you where to buy the products, so it’s obviously not an editorial series. Yet there’s nothing more native to the pages of Vanity Fair than luscious photographs of beautiful, fashionable people directed by Annie Leibovitz. These are ad pages that augment the reading experience that brought me to Vanity Fair in the first place. How lovely.

Pirated Louis Vuitton Logos In All the Wrong Places

Bad Car with Louis Vuitton Logos

I’m betting the brand team at Vuitton wishes home-made versions of its logo weren’t plastered on this car. It’s certainly a sign of strength that people want your logo on their houses, old cars and chainsaws. But does the proliferation of your brand in campy settings begin to erode that strength?