A Photographer’s Photographer: Gregory Heisler [Video]
Lately, I’ve been making an effort to grow my photo book library and one of my favorite recent additions (courtesy of my friend and On Taking Pictures co-host, Bill Wadman) is the absolutely brilliant Gregory Heisler: 50 Portraits. While some call him a celebrity photographer, I prefer to think of Heisler as a photographer of interesting faces. As the sub-title of the book suggests, Heisler is a photographer’s photographer. While his celebrity subjects garner popular appeal, his approach to the craft and his impeccable technical skills have earned him a loyal following by his peers and colleagues alike. In the book, Heisler takes you behind the curtain to share stories behind fifty of his most iconic photographs. For each of the shots in 50 Portraits, Heisler shares the story of how the shot came together as well as a subsequent section, called Thoughts on Technique, where he shares some insight on the technical side of the shoot, such as camera choice or lighting setup. As part of the promotion of the book, ILFORD sponsored a talk, which allowed Heisler to share additional details about the images, as well as stories that weren’t in the book, including the charming story of how he met – and ultimately began working for – Arnold Newman. It’s a wonderful two hours with a photographer who has been at the top of the game for decades and shows no sign of slowing down.
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