After leaving his position as director of men's fashion at his showroom to take care of his daughter in September 2005, he began carrying a digital camera around and photographing people he saw on the street whose style he found striking. Schuman began The Sartorialist with the idea of creating a two-way dialogue about the world of fashion and its relationship to daily life. 10 years later, the photographer has forged a highly original street photography career encompassing travel and interior shoots. He carries an enviable portfolio that includes brand collaborations with the likes of Burberry, Levi’s, Tiffany & Co, LK Bennet and a travel series with the El Embajador Royal Hideaway Hotel.
Schulman cites the National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry. as his main influence. With a notably non-fashion related source of inspiration, Schuman also finds himself most interested in design, veering away from overtly photographing branded clothing in his streetstyle photography.
Schuman’s blog soon gained popularity with the fashion industry, building momentum, which would see the site enter the general public’s awareness. The title, “The Sartorialist”, loosely translating to “well done”, is the guiding philosophy behind Schuman’s approach to capturing street style – highlighting originality in outfit composition as a means to commend the individual as the main objective. His early images sparked the interest of his hometown friend, Angela Ahrendts , head of Burberry at the time, who tapped Schuman to shoot trench coats for a Burberry campaign in 2009. Schuman’s photos and blog came to the attention of Dirk Standen , editor of Style.com, who commissioned the photograph to take street style photographs of the fashion packs congregating at fashion weeks across the globe. His first editorial shoot was for the British Elle, soon raising his profile so much so, that his photos became instrumental in promoting the career of up-and-coming fashion industry trendsetters, such as Anna Dello Rosso, editor-at-large of Vogue Japan.
Schuman has been featured in GQ Magazine where he was given his own page, to shoot and edit, in every issue for over three years, as well as work appearing in Vogue Italia, Vogue Paris, Esquire and Interview Magazine. Schuman has also been commissioned to work on advertisements for companies including Burberry, Gant by Michael Bastian, DKNY Jeans and Nespresso; the photographer himself appeared in a GAP campaign in 2008.
An anthology of his images was published in 2009 byThree volumes of his book series, “The Sartorialist” have been published by Penguin, picked up by stockists such as Net-a-Porter and since then has soldhave sold over 100,000 copies. His work resides in the permanent collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum, The Tokyo and the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography and the National Portrait Gallery. In 2018, the Getty Museum staged an exhibition on 100 years of fashion photography, featuring Schuman’s work among others. .
Schuman also tried his hand at design, collaborating with the Italian menswear label, Sutor Mantellassi on a limited-edition shoe collection showcased at the Florence Pitti Uomo show in 2015.
In 2012, Schuman won the CFDA media award with then girlfriend and prominent French street-style photographer,Schuman has been dating the prominent French street-style photographer and illustrator Garance Doré since 2008. In 2015, the couple announced an amicable break-up on social media. Schuman is now engaged to Jenny Walton, who was also appointed as illustrater and fashion director of The Sartorialist. Schuman also announced the upcoming release of a travel book on style in India, Africa and South America.