American fashion photographer Richard Avedon - Quotes and wisdom about photography
What I want is light in which the subject is free to move in any way without falling Richard Avedon, The Best of Popular Photography by Harvey V. Fondiller . the moment I'm photographing them in order to deepen the sense of connection. Richard Avedon's portraits, taken over 50 years, present a chronicle of America. Simon Schama, who was once one of his subjects, describes the . that it might have some relationship to the way others see us: strong, wise. Richard Avedon >The American fashion photographer Richard Avedon (born ) Instead, a strobe light illuminates every pore and flaw of the subject's face, turning .. In Avedon began a decade-long association with Theatre Arts.
In Avedon directed Judy Garland in a television special, and his first book, Observations, appeared.
- 5 Lessons Richard Avedon Has Taught Me About Street Photography
- Richard Avedon
His second book, Personalincluded a text by James Baldwin. He insisted on having full control of the choice and the exhibition of the photographs, which were displayed in what was then the unusually large format of four-foot high prints overlapping and filling the entire installation space.
He excluded any fashion images, choosing instead stark and startling studio portraits. Using an eight-by-ten view camera, he combined a shallow depth of focus with the remorseless detail of the larger-than-life print format. His subjects stared at and down the viewer. Photographs included the then drug-addicted pianist and wit Oscar Levant, a frightened-looking Marilyn Monroethe closed-eyed and in pain poet Ezra Pound, and an unusually worried-looking duke and duchess of Windsor.
About the Photographer
For the last photograph, Avedon lied to the royals that his car had just run over a dog, and then he snapped their reaction. Nowhere were to be seen theatrically posed and composed portraits using dramatic lighting and ennobling settings.
Rather, flat lighting and a white backdrop concentrated full attention to the figures, who were cruelly unmasked psychologically. He worked for Vogue for five years and also freelanced assignments, including music album covers, such as for Simon and Garfunkel in and Johnny Winter in The portrait show of hundreds of images ranged from small works to gigantic ten-by-thirty-foot photo murals of groups, including political activists and the artist Andy Warhol and his superstar entourage.
By the early s Avedon claimed to friends that he had lost interest in fashion. Yet in he memorialized a fifteen-year-old Brooke Shields wearing skintight Calvin Klein jeans, and in more than two million posters were sold of his photograph of Nastassja Kinski lying on a backdrop with a python snake slithering across her nude body.
Beyond his work in the magazine industry, Avedon has collaborated on a number of books of portraits.
Players and contenders
In he worked with Truman Capote on a book that documented some of the most famous and important people of the century. Around this same time he began a series of images of patients in mental hospitals. Replacing the controlled environment of the studio with that of the hospital he was able to recreate the genius of his other portraits with non-celebrities.
The brutal reality of the lives of the insane was a bold contrast to his other work. Years later he would again drift from his celebrity portraits with a series of studio images of drifters, carnival workers, and working class Americans. Having met in New York inBaldwin and Avedon were friends and collaborators for more than thirty years.
For all of the s and s Avedon continued working for Vogue magazine, where he would take some of the most famous portraits of the decades.
He then started as a photographer for the Merchant Marinestaking ID shots of the crewmen with the Rolleiflex camera his father had given him. Lillian Bassman also promoted Avedon's career at Harper's.
In his photographs began appearing in Junior Bazaar and, a year later, in Harper's Bazaar.
He soon became the chief photographer for Harper's Bazaar. Instead, Avedon showed models full of emotion, smiling, laughing, and, many times, in action in outdoor settings which was revolutionary at the time.
He also photographed the Calvin Klein Jeans campaign featuring a fifteen-year-old Brooke Shieldsas well as directing her in the accompanying television commercials.
5 Lessons Richard Avedon Has Taught Me About Street Photography
Avedon first worked with Shields in for a Colgate toothpaste ad. She focuses the inarticulate rage people feel about the decline in contemporary morality and destruction of innocence in the world. But when he works, he's so acutely creative, so sensitive.
And he doesn't like it if anyone else is around or speaking. There is a mutual vulnerability, and a moment of fusion when he clicks the shutter.
Richard Avedon | About the Photographer | American Masters | PBS
You either get it or you don't". In addition to his continuing fashion work, by the s Avedon was making studio portraits of civil rights workers, politicians and cultural dissidents of various stripes in an America fissured by discord and violence.
The first, taken in mid to latebecame one of the first major rock poster series,[ citation needed ] and consisted of five psychedelic portraits of the group — four heavily solarized individual color portraits and a black-and-white group portrait taken with a Rolleiflex camera and a normal Planar lens.