Richard Avedon (May 15, 1923 – October 1, 2004) was an American photographer. An obituary published in The New York Times said that „his fashion and portrait photographs helped define America’s image of style, beauty and culture for the last half-century.”
In 1944, Avedon began working as an advertising photographer for a department store, but was quickly discovered by Alexey Brodovitch, the art director for the fashion magazine Harper’s Bazaar. Lillian Bassman also promoted Avedon’s career at Harper’s. In 1945 his photographs began appearing in Junior Bazaar and, a year later, in Bazaar itself.
In 1946, Avedon had set up his own studio and began providing images for magazines including Vogue and Life. He soon became the chief photographer for Harper’s Bazaar. From 1950 he also contributed photographs to Life, Look and Graphis and in 1952 became Staff Editor and photographer for Theatre Arts Magazine. Avedon did not conform to the standard technique of taking fashion photographs, where models stood emotionless and seemingly indifferent to the camera. Instead, Avedon showed models full of emotion, smiling, laughing, and, many times, in action. Towards the end of the 1950s he became dissatisfied with daylight photography and open air locations and so turned to studio photography, using strobe lighting.
Michael Thompson was born and raised in Washington State, where he was first introduced to photography at his father’s small portrait studio. He spent his summers working with his father, then, after graduating from high school, he earned a degree from the Brooks Institute of Photography. After completing his schooling, Michael Thompson moved to New York City and began assisting the legendary photographer, Irving Penn.
Michael Thompson has since photographed models and celebrities for countless prestigious fashion magazines, including W, Details, Allure, Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Vanity Fair, GQ and The New York Times Magazine.
Vivian Maier (February 1, 1926 – April 21, 2009) was an American street photographer born in New York City. Although born in the U.S., it was in France that Maier spent most of her youth. Maier returned to the U.S. in 1951 where she took up work as a nanny and care-giver for the rest of her life. In her leisure however, Maier had begun to venture into the art of photography. Consistently taking photos over the course of five decades, she would ultimately leave over 100,000 negatives, most of them shot in Chicago and New York City.
Anna-Lou „Annie” Leibovitz (born October 2, 1949) is an American portrait photographer. Born in Waterbury, Connecticut, Leibovitz is the third of six children. She is a third-generation American whose great-grandparents were Jewish immigrants, from Central and Eastern Europe. Her father’s parents had emigrated from Romania. Her mother, Marilyn Leibovitz, was a modern dance instructor of Estonian Jewish heritage; her father, Sam Leibovitz, was a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force. The family moved frequently with her father’s duty assignments, and she took her first pictures when he was stationed in the Philippines during the Vietnam War.