Photography Week 3 – Photographers, their work and its composition
During the third week we had to research fifty photographs from our own interest and from those fifty, reduce them to ten. These ten photographs had also to be from ten different photographers and our task was to explore their work and the composition of each photograph.
This 2005 image was used in one of Toscani’s campaigns
Oliviero Toscani was born in Milan, in 1942, and studied photography at The University of Fine Arts in Zurich. From 1982 to 2000, he created the image, identity and communication strategy of The United Colors of Benetton, turning it into one of the most recognized brands in the world.
This fashion photographer works for magazines such as Elle, Vogue, GQ, Harper’s Bazaar and Esquire, amongst others. Always next to the controversy, Toscani shot to notoriety with his use of shock images for a series of campaigns that featured subjects ranging from dying AIDS patients to death row inmates and anorexia.
- Suffering – Body language under the spotlight. Victims of themselves;
- Meaning – Addiction to plastic surgery and shame;
- The grey and not so bright background put them right in the center of the attention;
- Toscani, O. (2005) Elle [Online image]. Available at: http://phototechmag.com/creativity-is-a-minds-game/ (Accessed: 17 November 2013).
Unfortunately this genius photographer can no longer amaze us with some new work. Norman Parkinson was a photographer for over fifty years, having the peak of his career during the Fifties and early Sixties. In my opinion, he was the really first fashion photographer, since he was one of the first in the industry to shoot models outside the studio.
Parkinson inspired me to talk about his work because he had the great capacity to transform fashion photography into a new and modern era. His portraits were playful and dynamic. He began to work at Vogue in 1942.
- The model is focused in the center of the photograph, which makes our eyes look at her straight away;
- Movement – the car and the walk of the man behind creates some movement in the image;
- Her face expression and pose indicates she was expecting to be photographed;
- Her shadow as well as of the dogs’ and the man’s are a notorious part of the composition of the image;
- This photograph is also marked by the amount of light that possess and the black and white effect make the image seem old.
- Parkinson, N. (1952) Vogue [Online image]. Available at: http://www.1stdibs.com/art/photography/norman-parkinson-barbara-mullen-dogs-vogue-1952/id-a_40156/ (Accessed: 17 November 2013)
Woman on the street
Polish-born photographer Peter Lindbergh has worked for all the top magazines, from Vogue and Marie Claire to Harper’s Bazaar and Interview.
When it comes to his photography style, the black and white, realistic and natural images are his signature and those are the qualities that people most appreciate about his work when his name is mentioned.
- Atmosphere – loneliness, anguish in the eyes, cold;
- Her posture and clothes reveals she feels unprotected, “naked” and adrift ;
- Also, her position on the road right next the unfocused cars, apparently in rush hour, transmits she is lost and her mind is faraway;
- All these features and feelings are even more connected due to black and white effect that captures the reality and personality even more.
Piazza di Spagna (Rome),1960 – courtesy Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milan
William Klein was born in New York City and from 1942 to the beginning of the Fifties he studied Sociology, went to the US army, moved to Paris and collaborated with architect Angelo Mangiarotti and Domus Magazine. In 1954, Klein returned to the Big Apple and during ten years worked for Vogue. He currently lives and works in Paris.
Like Norman Parkinson, also William is one of the “responsibles” of the revolution of fashion photography and modernity in general. He is known for extensive use of wide angle and telephoto lenses, natural lighting and transform the model and the
garment into something artful (more than just show the garment).
- Photography clearly marked by the presence of black and white straight lines/stripes (dresses and crosswalk);
- Apparently this is a picture from the Sixties, due to the clothes people are wearing, the motorcycle and photo quality;
- Envy – The woman behind turned her head, probably to look at the model and her clothes.
- Klein, W. (1960) Piazza di Spagna [Online image]. Available at: http://ehehr1955.wordpress.com/2011/03/24/william-klein-fashion-photography/ (Accessed: 17 November 2013)