Richard Avedon

American fashion and portrait photographer

Richard Avedon Biography

Richard Avedon was one of the most well-known and prominent American fashion and portrait photographers of his era. He was born on May 15, 1923 in New York City. His mother came from a long line of dress manufacturers. His father owned a clothing store called Avedon's Fifth Avenue, and this is what sparked his interest in fashion. His favorite hobby was photographing clothes in his father's store. When he was only twelve years old, he joined the YMHA (Young Men's Hebrew Association) Camera Club. He worked as a photographer for Merchant Marines in World War II taking identification photos. He then went on to work in the fashion industry, photographing for Harper's Bazaar and Vogue. His style of art was fashion, portraiture, and advertising. He used materials such as umbrellas, beauty dishes, and elinchrom strobes. In the late 1940's and early 1950's, Avedon photographed exquisite black-and-white pictures of high fashion in realistic settings. He took these photographs in Paris's picturesque cafes, cabarets and streetcars. This is important to me because of my obsession with Paris and high-fashion. He stated that his models portrayed a sense of emotion and movement, and this is what made his photography contrast from the usual lackluster fashion photography. Irving Penn was another American photographer known for his fashion photography, portraits and still lifes throughout the same time period. Helmut Newton was also a widely known fashion photographer throughout this time period, but he was predominantly known in Germany and Australia. Avedon worked as a staff photographer for Harper's Bazaar for twenty years before he passed away on October 1, 2004, working for The New Yorker in San Antonio, Texas.

Works Cited

"About." Richard Avedon. Web. 10 Dec. 2015.

"Richard Avedon Biography." Bio.com. A&E Networks Television. Web. 10 Dec. 2015.

"Richard Avedon." Online. Web. 10 Dec. 2015.

Favorite quote

"All photographs are accurate. None of them is the truth."
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I liken myself to RIchard Avedon because of my immense love for fashion. I also think that his photographs are very realistic, and they are complex without being over-the-top. I'm inspired by this artist to pursue a career in the fashion photography industry in my mid-20's, because Avedon came from a similar background as me and it makes me think anything is possible. I might attend an art institute in order to get certified.
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