Fred Herzog

Another Saturday came and I am dedicating this lovely afternoon to a very interesting photographer about which I have never heard before. His name is Fred Herzog (1930 September 21). In De Montfort University library, I came up with this monograph and tried to look and get deeper with his works. This photo album with artist essay and interview can be easily bought from Amazon.

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Fred Herzog had a hard childhood because during his early childhood he lost his both parents, abandoned school and moved to Canada from Germany. Eventually, he established in Vancouver and straight away started taking photographs in the streets because he felt particular interest in taking photographs with people..

While spreading pages through the book, only then I realised that he is one of the first 35 mm colour photography pioneers. During the 50s, 60s serious organisations such like Magnum and many other photographers were shooting entirely on Black and White films because it seemed to be more appropriate at that era, not that distracting and much cheaper. Colour Photography during those times were related with special occasions or travel snapshots. To make prints from color slides were not only difficult to produce around 60s but also they were very expensive and often chemically unstable.

Fred Herzog wanted to intimate journalism in a city environment and felt that someone has to do it, because people in the future would only be able to see how people looked at those time in Life or Time magazines…

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granville and robson 1959 by fred herzogPersonally, while looking at the pictures I couldn’t believe of such great quality colour images taken with the film camera around 1960s. Most of them looks like photographed with Digital camera. Another quite interesting thing which I have noticed looking at Fred’s images is that he also tended to photograph and capture neon lights at night, shop display windows, cars, various companies signs, all the suburbs and back yards with interesting stuff.  (There are some similarities to another very famous still living street and fashion photographer William Klein works.)This year while taking photographs in the streets I became interesting in familiar subjects and, perhaps, for the next year, I will dedicate one module for Urban Landscape theme.

To sum up, Fred Herzog is very interesting and talented photographer who is still living and I reckon, that every photographer should take a look to his works. It is uncommon chance to see early 50s and 60s America in colour!

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Raymond Depardon – Manhattan Out

From now on, I will try to dedicate every Saturday for someone who inspires me or are worth looking at. I will try to concentrate more on street photographers from all around the world, but if I will find someone  interesting from different area I will share with you as well.

Raymond Depardon – Manhattan Out

Last I week I went to my University Library and I took a huge bunch of various photo albums for deeper investigation. I really didn’t mind the author  because for me it’s more interesting to find something new which I haven’t heard about before. So, this Saturday I am dedicating to still living French photographer, photojournalist and documentary filmmaker Raymond Depardon. I don’t want to expand very biographically but I will mention that Raymond belongs to Magnum Photographers community and has won Pulitzer Prize in 1977 as a photo-journalist.

The book which I found in library has quite interesting story. Raymond has never been a street photographer but at 1980 winter he came to the New York with his friend. While she worked, Depardon used to walk around the city and take photos of random people. He was teriffied of New York, because couldn’t speak in english etc.  He decided to never look through viewfinder and take pictures from the waist level.

Despite the fact of those photographs, Raymond didn’t felt quite confident somehow and even had a fear to develop the films.  When he saw pictures for the first time, Depardon was disappointed of bad compositions  and simillar things and put all those photographs away for 27 years. After such long period of time, Raymond  with the help of friend had a chance to see and enlarge them again and eventually noticed something very unique.  A lot of Americans were looking stright at the camera lens!

Personally, after seeing this photo album which you can purchase from Amazon for quite reasonable price, I came up with conclusion that taking photographs from the waist level is really good technique because people have no idea someone is taking a photographs of them and sometimes wrong composition just makes image more stronger.

Here is some images from the photo album.

 

Similarity to street photographer Bruce Gilden

Last year autumn I was taking some images on 35 mm film around the city and when I developed that film I have noticed something worth looking.

All street photographers should know famous still living photographer Bruce Gilden and perhaps some of them are familliar with this photo taken years ago.bruce

After doing some research for my studies, I somehow remembered this photograph from Bruce Gilden and when developed and looked closer to my picture I became astonished. If you look closer, you will find so many similarities. Let’s start from composing the pictures – They are vertical images and persons are placed closer to the right side of image.  Both man wear hats and are looking downwards. Both man are smoking and they are in precise body position (Hands and legs gestures).  Isn’t that nice coincidence? img042