Today I am driving up to Santa Barbara, which I am very excited about. I am meeting someone I have long admired via the interwebs, who I do consider a friend and a tremendous source of inspiration. If you only knew how unlikely this whole trip is for me, you would be very proud. I am very shy and uncomfortable around people, unless I am working and I put on a ‘business’ social face, but to just meet people for the first time is a bit terrifying. I am equal parts nervous and excited, so I hope the balance doesn’t make me too much of a goof ball!
Back to some of my fave film photographers! Eliott Erwitt is way up there. I worked at gallery in my late teens and was exposed to many classic photographers, Eliott Erwitt being one of them. Last year when I was in NYC I got to go to an intimate exhibit of his work, the best part was the guided tour which was recorded by Mr. Erwitt himself. It was such a treat. You would think Erwitt’s work was another street photographer great like a Cartier-Bresson. His shots all seem so candid and as an aspiring photographer you may wonder how it is that he had gotten so lucky to seemingly always be able to be in the right place at the exact right time. When I worked at the gallery, I just thought he had impeccable timing, not that I knew anything about photography but I did know enough to be impressed by a photographer who was able to capture such moments. Fast forward a couple of decades and Erwitt himself reveals his secret to me (and of course every other attendee to the exhibit). He was in advertising and these seemingly candid shots were all well executed and staged. The top one above with the Great Dane and the Chihuahua was something he had painstakingly planned for a shoe ad. One of his other most famous shots of a couple kissing in their car has people from around the globe letting him know that it was them that he had happened to come across and shoot, some even demanding compensation, but alas it was a friend and a model he hired to do the shoot. The magic of the images for me now after the reveal is how he was able to create such authentic captures. There is no doubt in the viewers mind that these moments are not real. Some of the other photographers that I love that are in this same vein of creating these ‘authentic candids’ which are carefully planned are Norman Parkinson and Robert Doisneau (his very famous kiss photograph was an awesome staged shot). Definitely visit the links to see their work, I think you will be very inspired.
Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to the country with her handsome husband and two pups and will be re-locating back to the city in the very near future.