Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

  1. #1

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    I didn't see a reference to this article, so I thought I'd mention it.

    In the Sunday Times magazine, 08/08/04 (a rare date in that it shouldn't confuse the Americans!) there was a seven page article on the American West book, promoting Laura Wilson's book 'Avedon at Work'. Most of the seven pages are photographs, including Avedon at work with his wooden 8x10. While the photography doesn't do much for me, the stats may interest LF users, esp. 8x10 users:

    "Avedon photographed 752 people using 17 000 sheets of film and working in 189 towns."

    Of the beekeeper (shot covered in bees), Avedon shot 121 sheets over two days. But I suppose as it's B&W, it is pretty cheap!

  2. #2
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Rio Rancho, NM
    Posts
    3,797

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    Obviously, he must not have used Ilford film. ;-)

    Stats on the way Avedon shoots, whether in B&W or color always amaze me. Supposedly, he'll rent almost all of the 8x10 film holders available, and then have several assistants doing nothing but loading film. If he had Gowland's engineering bent, he'd probably have invented the twin-lens 8x10 Aveflex, with a special 8"x250' roll-film holder and a 2hp motor drive. ;-)

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    Posts
    438

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    I was thinking that he must be a pretty lousy photographer if it took him 121 sheets to get one picture.

  4. #4

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    I wonder how much of it was bracketing and how much was trying different poses and treatments? Just think, he could have justified development of an 8x10 Readyload or Quickload by himself...

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    154

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    I posted this a few months ago..figure I'd post it out of interest:

    My friend worked for Avedon during part of the "American West" project and processed his 8x10 negs. Has very interesting stories...but mum is the word!

    Here's his email he sent me regarding the "American West":

    "Don't know what lens avedon used on the deardorff. That was the location camera. In the studio he had a sinar. Funny, I don't remember what film he used or anything technical. It was probably tri-x in d-76. I kind of blacked out being in the darkroom and processing and proofing 300 sheets of 8x10 film at a time. My most vivid memory was the sx70 polaroids that would come back with the film for cataloging purposes. The drifters and oil workers just looked like hicks. The b&w 8x10's were art."

    Johnny V.
    John V.
    ScanHi-End Moderator

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Mar 1998
    Posts
    1,974

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    how much was trying different poses and treatments

    Mostly that. The technical stuff is pretty well nailed down by the time the first sheet of film goes in.

    The "In the American West" project was handled very differently from the way Ralph recalls his working methods being described. Those pertain to advertising shoots. As for shooting 121 sheets to get one he felt was strongest -- don't forget that he was shooting someone who wasn't used to being in front of a camera and was looking for a certain emotional quality in the sitter. Some magazine and advertising photographers who shoot people sometimes go through a lot more # of frames than that during a sitting to get the most emotionally powerful combinaton of expression and gesture and sometimes even clothing & location changes too. I think of this approach as bracketing ideas and emotions.

  7. #7
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Rio Rancho, NM
    Posts
    3,797

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    Ellis - you're correct about the work method I mentioned being that related to Avedon's commercial shoots. If one considers that it takes Sports Illustrated something like 4,000 images to produce a skimpy little swimsuit issue, 17,000 images for an entire book doesn't sound all that bad.

    Ah, the freedom provided by having no budgetary concerns, eh?

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Mar 1998
    Posts
    1,974

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    If one considers that it takes Sports Illustrated something like 4,000 images to produce a skimpy little swimsuit issue

    I remember a story on robgalbraith.com recently about how SI covered the Janet Jackson Super Bowl(s). They had somethinglike 11 photographers shooting the game winning play. Only one of them got a shot that was good enough for the cover. here is the link to that story: SI workflow

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    Baraboo, Wisconsin
    Posts
    7,697

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    Pity the poor beekeeper.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    9,296

    Richard Avedon article UK Sunday Times

    When I was an assistant at Kodak, they had hundreds of 8x10 holders and an automatic B&W film processor. Before Polaroid, you used to soup the film in the auto processor and then check the results for DOF, sharpness, etc. or even make a work print from a wet neg.

    I think 8x10 was used for so much commercial work because it was easier to retouch and to reduce the image (or reproduce at nearly 100%). Pure overkill but it got the job done...

Similar Threads

  1. New York Times Article
    By John Flavell in forum On Photography
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 27-Oct-2005, 09:36
  2. More on Richard Avedon from Laura Wilson:
    By Ellis Vener in forum On Photography
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 4-Jan-2005, 14:15
  3. Richard Avedon Dies
    By Jerry Flynn in forum Announcements
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 3-Oct-2004, 03:17
  4. Richard Avedon, Evidence 1944-94
    By Bill_1856 in forum On Photography
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 2-Oct-2004, 09:16
  5. Richard Avedon - American West fans
    By tim atherton in forum On Photography
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 9-Jun-2004, 20:35

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •