Influences.

Which photographers do you enjoy looking at? What inspires you? Do you have friends who share your enthusiasm, either in your locality or online?

I think it is always interesting to discover that another photographer really appreciates the same historical or contemporary photographers as yourself, or is a fan of the same style of work as yourself. It establishes a connection and deepens a friendship to have things to share.

It suddenly occurred to me today that I had a long list of names that I very rarely get a chance to talk about and that I should write a little about them. I don’t expect everyone to agree with me, but I will be interested to read your responses.

Should you welcome the influence of other photographers? Most University and College photography courses in the UK force students to work in the style of a short list of contemporary photographers and the criticise them for not being original. I’m glad that wasn’t the case when I studied photography.

In my early days as a student I found myself easily influenced by any photography that I saw. I wanted to develop a style that was my own and didn’t want to be influenced by anything that had gone before, so I made a conscious decision to stay away from as much of it as I possibly could. I avoided exhibitions, books and magazines (there wasn’t anything else in those days, except for TV and that was rubbish). I couldn’t keep it up, because photography is everywhere and I had to think of another strategy. I decided on the polar opposite approach: To look at as diverse a range of work as I possibly could, and lots of it. This had the effect of giving me an enormous range of styles and techniques to choose from, and it really opened my eyes to what was possible.

You will I expect, be able to spot one or two of my influences in this list and that is fine. I have not tried to deliberately copy them, but I love the style of work they do and enjoy working in that style sometimes. I make no apology for this, after all, there is more than one band playing blues music.

There are quite a number of photographers in this list and I can’t include all the pictures that I love (I’m not even sure of the copyright issues with that), so instead of putting them in this blog post, I am going to give you a link to my Pinterest page where you can see a large and diverse selection.

I don’t have space here to say why I love the work of these people, but I hope that the images work for you too. I also hope that you discover work that you were unaware of. Please comment and let me know what you think, and perhaps recommend other photographers I might have missed.

Photographers
Richard Avedon, Roger Ballen, Bill Brandt, Zeke Berman, Harry Callahan, Trevor Crone, Robert Demachy, Baron Adolf De Meyer, William Eggleston, David Eustace, Lee Friedlander, Horst P Horst, Rhodri Jones, Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen, Josef Koudelka, Wright Morris, William Mortenson, Leonard Missone, Raymond Moore, Arnold Newman, Robert Parke Harrison, Irving Penn, Sabastiao Salgado, Edwin Smith, W. Eugene Smith, Frederick Sommer, Edward Steichen, Josef Sudek, Jerry Eulsmann, Bradford Washburn, Albert Watson, Edward Weston, Minor White, Joel Peter Witkin. Francesca Woodman, Ion Zupcu,

 

My Pinterest page of photographers work;  https://uk.pinterest.com/andrew2499/photographers/

5 thoughts on “Influences.

  1. keith

    There are quite a few photographers who’s photo’s I admire, but I always try to keep to my own ideas as to what I want from a photograph or photographic project.
    It’s better to be a 1st class me than a 2nd class imitator of a photographer I admire even if my own photo’s are lousy in comparison. 😉

    Too many photographer to list Andrew, ’nuff said.

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  2. Thomas Binsfeld

    Dear Andrew,
    I really like press photography and therefore (as a german) do like the german photojournalists Robert Lebeck and Barbara Klemm (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung).
    As pure photo artists I like Tim Rudman because he is both an excellent photographer and printer.
    Of course I really admire your artistic work and having a workshop with you influenced my photographic activity strongly. You also belong to the rare group of photographers who are both, excellent photographer AND excellent printer.
    I my opinion both belongs together because idea and interpretation is in one hand.

    Kind regards,
    Thomas

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  3. Larry Horricks

    HI Andrew…I just received your email and it got me to thinking again about paper negs. I’ve been so busy with my “day” photography job, that I haven’t much time for anything else…perhaps I should change that. That being said, these are the artists who’s work has and continues to inspire and influence: Deborah Turbeville, Scott Irvine, Jan Sudek, Mark Sink. Thanks for your generosity in sharing and taking the approach that there are no secrets in photography.

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