The history of glamour photography

The history of glamour photography

The photographic history of glamour

makeover photography makeover photography

vintage glamour
Boudoir and glamour photography history    In 1839 Sir John Herschel coined the word ‘photography’ from two Greek words: phõs, which means light; and graphein, which means to write. The art of photography has come a very long way since those early days of experimental picture taking, to the amazing digital cameras which so many of us use today. In its earliest form, photography was described by a Chinese philosopher, Mo Ti; and by Aristotle and Euclid, the famous Greek mathematicians, between the 4th and 5th centuries CE. By the 6th century, Anthemius of Tralles, a Byzantine mathematician, showed how at type of camera, known as a camera obscura, could be used to create pictures. Various improvements and new discoveries continued through the centuries to the stages of the first sepia, then black and white and finally color photographs were created. Taking a giant step forward in the history of photography to the 21st century, almost everyone is now able to take photographs with a variety of cameras, from the highly technical models used by professional photographers to the basic cameras built into cell phones and the more advanced dual cameras found in the newest of tablets.

1920s glamour

The history of glamour photography Photographs have since formed a pictorial history of the most important times in the history of the world, from wars and famines to great historical achievements like the famous moon landing – and everything in between. Photography has become a valuable and respected art form, with noted photographers having their works hung in the best art museums and galleries of the world. Some of the 20th century’s most well known photographers include the American, Ansel Adams, who specialized in taking pictures of nature; the Pulitzer Prize winner Eddie Adams, who was a war photographer and whose graphic pictures taken during the Vietnam War were seen worldwide; and Richard Avedon, once voted one of the Ten Best Photographers in the World, who shot portraits of the rich and famous and was a noted fashion photographer.

vintage glamour

The very famous photograph of Ursula Andress emerging from the sea in Jamaica in Dr No, the very first James Bond movie filmed in 1962, could very well be the beginning of glamour photography. The image of a very beautiful and buxom blonde striding out of the sea with her wet hair dripping water over her shoulders and her clothes clinging very alluringly to her body (and thus showing all her beautiful curves) is the epitome of sensual and glamorous photography. So beautiful was she in this scene that it is said James Bond (who was played by Sean Connery) simply stood looking at her and totally forgot his lines.

glamour portrait

Richard Avedon, as stated above, made a name for himself taking portrait pictures of fashion models and celebrities over a period of time beginning in 1942 and ending with his death in 2004. He famously worked for top fashion magazines like Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, His type of photography was not that of the style of the day where the majority of photographers simply shot pictures of models standing in boring poses without any expression on their faces, simply to show off the clothes they were wearing. Instead, he had his models pose in interesting positions using props to make the pictures more real; and he insisted on them showing a full gamut of emotions, like laughing and smiling. He progressed to having his models move, so that he was able to capture on film action pictures. Probably Richard Avedon’s most famous and glamorous fashion shots were done for a big name denim jeans brand, where both a female and a male model were photographed only wearing jeans, clearly showing the outline of the female figure. This series of advertisements for the jeans manufacturer are world renowned and are a true depiction of glamour photography at its best. Some of his best photographs are hung in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of Art in New York City, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao (northern Spain) and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

retro glamour

Most of the glamour photographers who make their livings from this very specialized form of photography nowadays studied and learned a thing or two from these two great masters of glamour photography. It would be wise to study their works before setting out to hire a glamour photographer for your own personal needs, as there are many photographers who have set themselves up with a studio and purport to be specialists in this type of photography but who, in fact, produce smutty pictures which border on pornography and which are definitely not glamorous at all. Always ask a photographer to show you his portfolio of past work so that you can see exactly what type of pictures he shoots and thus you will be able to choose a photographer who will take your pictures exactly as you want.

History of glamour

Modern glamour photography The modern day glamour photographer should most certainly have a proper studio equipped with every bit of equipment and any and all accessories which may be needed for the photography session. His or her equipment will include a variety of cameras and special lenses, various types of lighting (such as spot lights) and props such as chairs, ladders, mirrors and the like. He or she should also have an assistant to help with the positioning of the light reflectors and other related tasks, as well as being able to help you change into different outfits, if needed. Many glamour photographers either have makeup artists and hairdresser on their staff, or will be able to advise you who to go to, in order for your hair and makeup to be professionally done.

Following the above advice will ensure that each and every one of your pictures will be of the highest possible quality and will be tastefully and beautifully produced to show you in your best possible light, but you must be aware that these photographers will airbrush their pictures to remove any blemishes or shadows which may mar any of their photographs.