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Top 5 Iconic Fashion Photographers: Helmut Newton, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Peter Lindbergh, Guy Bourden

By Mai 15, 2020 No Comments

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L i s a  L u k y a n o v a

Top 5 Iconic Fashion Photographers: Helmut Newton, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Peter Lindbergh, Guy Bourden

“My job as a portrait photographer is to seduce, amuse and entertain.“   Helmut Newton

1.Helmut Newton (1920-2004) is an iconic figure, symbolic and influential in the world of photography. Newton was a portraitist, a supporter of classical composition and a follower of the avant-garde trend.

Newton’s work has challenged convention. He was creating characters that would test the limits and provoke the world. Being a photographer bridging the gap between art and commerce, Helmut Newton has always managed to amaze and polarize the public. Newton introduced the liberating light of women as well as repositioning the model standard, incorporating nudity, sexuality and femininity in his black and white photographs. 

Newton’s work is often called cold. The photographer considered each of them as a specific task based on calculation and mastery. This is how he is remembered by the world – the flawlessness of images, professionalism, his own vision of the beautiful and extremely clearly constructed images.

Helmut Newton

Helmut Newton

Helmut Newton

“I can get obsessed by anything if I look at it long enough. That’s the curse of being a photographer.” Irving Penn

2.The American Irving Penn (1917-2009) was one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century. Irwin Penn is a genuine classic, legend and nearly mythological figure who shot almost all the celebrities.

In the mid-80s, Irwin Penn was fond of making extremely extraordinary subject compositions, which have become, as well as his accurate, graphic photo models, the visiting card of the artist. Never was he afraid of showing things on the „ugly“ side. The fruit in his pictures is crushed with his fingers; the background for the huge bee in close-up is the brightly painted woman’s lips on which it places.

His still lifes are stamped with the idea that everything in the world is not eternal, all decays and dies, only the beauty of the moment can be preserved, even when the model loses it. In 1943 he in fact photographed the first and only Vogue still life cover.

Irving Penn

Irving Penn

Irving Penn

“A portrait is not a likeness. The moment an emotion or fact is transformed into a photograph it is no longer a fact but an opinion. ” Richard Avedon

3.Richard Avedon’s (1923-2004)  work impresses with the dynamics, lightness and elegance of its characters.

Avedon’s work is impeccable. His vision eye and composition skills manifest itself when he takes over his object in front of a lens.Most often, the viewer can see that the photos are dominated by an unobtrusive light background, there is an intrusive composition, often the entire picture in black and white tones. However, one still wants to look at the images and scrutinize every detail. In Avedon’s portraits, the model always comes to the fore The uniqueness of the works of Richard Avedon is that in them he discloses the inner world of his characters, makes them special.The portraits of Avedon are full of emotion, individuality and action. In principle, when you look at Avedon’s work – it makes you feel connected and forced by what he has created.  

Some works of the master were not accepted by the public categorically. In particular, the album „American Starfall“ was criticized by many artists immediately after its release. In it, all the photos were taken very realistic, not hiding, but emphasizing wrinkles, folds, age and flaws in the faces of models. However, then all the photographs in this style were described as brilliant and innovative.

Richard Avedon

Richard Avedon

Richard Avedon

“The photographer, even in fashion and portraiture, has to have a standpoint. It’s important to know what you stand for, no? Most people just take pictures but they stand for nothing. They follow trends and don’t know why.” Peter Lindbergh

4.Peter Lindbergh (1994-2019)  is truly one of the most prominent and admired photographers in the fashion world.

Lindberg is regarded as one of the pioneers of natural beauty in glossy, he was an outspoken opponent of Photoshop, and he was also an ardent opponent of selfies, which he considered distorted the true image of the person. Strong, candid and private black and white portraits of Lindbergh keep appearing as some of the best in modern fashion.

Lindbergh used to take black and white photos most commonly because he believed that color was a distraction from the face. Usually things started to go very out of order during the process, and the most challenging task was to stop clinging to the initial idea. Lindbergh worked to keep things new open in his work and was not afraid to take a wrong turn.

Peter Lindbergh

Peter Lindbergh

Peter Lindbergh

“I have never perceived myself as responsible for my images. They are just accidents. I am not a director, merely an agent of chance“ – Guy Bourdin

5.Guy Bourdin (1928-1991) who was born in France in 1928 is most famous for his experimental photography. Mainly working in color, Bourdin was a key member of the French Vogue from 1955 until the late 80s, breaking the line of fashion photography, imagining bold, frequently controversial shots with exceptional modern aesthetics. 

Fashion photographer, who primarily created advertising shots, was able to draw the viewer’s interest to the product sold rather than to attractive models. At the same time, each image was perceived not as a separate scene of life, but as a whole history, which contains the plot and connotation.

Editorial houses that collaborated with Guy, provided him with complete freedom, and he enjoyed this, implementing the most daring intentions. In addition to the glamour shots in his collection you can find rough and, in some places, brutal photos.

Guy Bourden

Guy Bourden

Guy Bourden

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