My January trip to Milan for The Photo District News interested me in the possibilities that fashion photography offered and with the help of some stylist friends, I began shooting tests: photo sessions set-up through an agency where photographer, make-up artist, and beginning model collaborate to make pictures for their respective portfolios. My early efforts along these lines were not good. I tried doing too much at any given shoot, too many clothes, too many “looks”, while lacking a greater sensitivity to the occasions. I had to learn to keep things simple and pay attention.
I’d say also that fashion pictures call for more than the thoughtful drama of portraiture and social photography, an edginess and daring, vulgarity done exquisitely well, that I was not especially good at then, and have gotten tired of since. It comes down to temperament, and to have a chance at success relies on finding people to work with, a production team, who’ll share a commitment to the same vision. Fashion photography is closer to moviemaking than any other photographic pursuit, and I have enormous respect for those who do it well.