‘‘I was very fortunate to have met, and have an afternoon coffee with Guy Bourdin, and just sit and talk about fashion, life, photography, and vision. I shot the model Rachel Roberts as a homage to one of the greatest Photographers of all time! He taught me an important lesson that day. He said “If everyone turns right….you turn left”. In other words..find your own path, your own vision, your own point of view. Right now in the industry, I see young photographers ALL simply copying what has already been done, doing the same crap, trite pictures…then telling everyone “how wonderful they are”.
David Leslie Anthony. His official website bio states just that: ”David Leslie Anthony is based in the U.S., and works in Los Angeles, New York, Paris, London, Milan,Chicago, Miami, and Toronto. He has worked in Harper’s Bazaar (Intl. Editions) Marie Claire (Intl. Editions),Marie Claire U.K. Conde Nast Publications, Zink Magazine,Allure, USA,ELLE Magazine,Canada,ELLE UK, (basically, almost all major ones!), plus having advertising clients such as Calvin Klein/ Bon Ton, Pepsi U.K. (Europe),Samsung/DigitAll, Bakers Shoes (National),Von Dutch (National & International) and many, many more
From my point of view,he is a person that actually needs no introduction to fashion connoisseurs as his work and mega-clients speak for themselves regarding his high placement in fashion circles.And yet,i know firs-handed, that David Anthony,albeit being an absolute professional,is always an artist,a quality that’s being reflected in his work,making him a point of reference for many younger,aspiring photographers.He has personality which in my own terms,means strong opinions and a clear vision on what he wants to achieve in each work admission,,professionally and artistically.I consider myself lucky for having met him and perhaps even luckier for naming him ”my mentor” in this chaotic fashion world. The present interview is not that much to present someone that he’s already known than to thank him.
-How come you entered the world of fashion photography?
I was in the beauty industry during the 80’s, as a Creative Director for some major Hairdressing Companies, and while in that position, was responsible for the creation of both hair designs and the photographic image. I was frustrated that everything in the beauty industry was “just head & shoulder” shots, and felt that fashion must be incorporated into the final image. Thus I began working with top photographers doing the hair for editorials, and in turn, began photographing my own work. This led to eventually “retiring” from the beauty industry, and into fashion photography full time.
-Which fashion photographers you may say influenced your own work?
Right off the bat, I was highly influenced by Guy Bourdin and Helmut Newton for their evocative images and what they got from their models. Their photos asked as many questions from the viewer, as they answered. Herb Ritts and Richard Avedon for their simplicity and clean lines. Peter Lindbergh for his story telling, and Arthur Elgort for the natural movement and grace he evoked from the model. There were also Mario Testino, Steven Meisel, Dennis Piel, Dominique Isserman, and Deborah Turbeville, who all greatly influenced my work, thoughts, and I would spend hours studying their work in the pages of every fashion magazine I could find.
-Do you prefer to work on film or digital and why?
Today I work with both. In the beginning it was just film, and I strived to learn everything I could about that medium. Personally I think that by working with film, it makes you a better photographer in digital, because you truly learn to “see” the final product and its evolution. All the top names you see in the best fashion magazines, all came from a film background. I do shoot digital for most of my assignments, however for my personal Gallery work, and if I have plenty of “lead time”, I’ll shoot film.
-What would you describe as ”chic”?
Elegance. The ability to put things together that transcends style.
Funkshion-CONCEPT FILM-Filmed and directed by David L.Anthony
David Leslie Anthony