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People of the West

One of the great photographers of the 20th century, and it’s a shame he hasn’t been mentioned on PforPHOTO before, is Richard Avedon. He was famous for both his fashion as his portrait photography. His photos were published in different magazines. E.g. Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue and Life. But before I get lost in all of his work for magazines, I like to focus on his portraiture work. And especially his series In the American West.

In the American West came about during 1979 till 1984. He portrayed the working people of the west. Such as miners and oil field workers. But also unemployed drifters and the teenagers who grew up in the West. He photographed each individual on a plain white background. By using a large format camera the details of the photographs are just amazing. You really get to see the people of the American West, up close and personal. This series really shows the power of photography. With only a white background and a camera Avedon shows us a simple yet effective way of portrait photography.

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