August 26th, 2008

  • ana_lee

John Rawlings: реалист

The introduction of American photographer John Rawlings to Vogue's visual team in 1936 was certainly one of Conde Nast's best strategic moves. At a time when opulence, pretentiousness, and theatrical lighting were prevalent in fashion photography - fueled by the European school led by the British Beaton, the German Horst, and the Russian Hoyningen-Huene - Nast and Vogue's editor in chief Edna Woolman Chase decided they needed a change of direction and placed their bets on a talented but unknown twenty-four-year Midwestener.

In two memos sent by Chase, one to her staff in 1937 and another to the photographers in 1938, she demanded more information and less art in Vogue pictures: "Several of the photographs for September fifteenth are nothing but black smudges," she wrote in the second. "Concentrate completely on showing the dress, light it for this purpose and if that can't be done with art then art be damned. Show the dress. This is an order straight from the boss's mouth and will you please have it typed and hung in the studio".

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