Photographers around the world are boiling mad at fashion photographer Terry Richardson for “taking misogyny too far.” Richardson, the outrageous personality that works with all the top fashion magazines, has photographed stars, superstars, presidents, and people that have transmogrified into global brands, using his signature style, hard, straight-ahead light.
Like him or not, Richardson is one of those rare photographers whose popularity extends beyond the photography industry and into the mainstream. Shockingly, NCN research shows that more people know Terry Richardson than Henri Cartier-Bresson. In many ways, Richardson’s the Frank Gehry of the photography world. Except that Richardson sleeps with his subjects*. Those are the accusations at least, and that is what is drawing the ire of the camera community. NCN spoke to some photographers in the industry for their take on the whole Terry Richardson thing:
“Terry Richardson is giving all fashion, pinup, and boudoir photographers a bad name. We’d like to go back to the way things were, when we were able to objectify women without drawing too much attention to ourselves. When I take a photo of a woman’s butt in lacy lingerie, I’m doing it with the utmost respect for her totality as a human being. Richardson’s ruining it for all of us.”
“There is misogyny with a lower case ‘m’ – you know, treating female models as dolls to be dressed up and posed and then Photochopping every last pore and bump from their skin. And then there’s Terry Richardson’s MISOGYNY, all caps, 72 point Helvetica Bold – you know, treating female models as dolls to be dressed up and then having sex with them before Photochopping every last pore and bump from their skin.”
– Anonymous Model Mayhem photographer
“His lighting is awful.”
– A dedicated strobist
“I know it when I see it (pornography).”
– Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, Jacobellis v. Ohio, 1964
None of the subjects interviewed were women. But that’s ok, we know what’s best for them**. Terry Richardson could not be reached for this story. He’s too busy making loads of money.
Follow NCN on the Facebooks, Twitters, and that other thing for the latest camera news.
* Gehry may in fact sleep with his subjects, but they’re buildings, so that’s different.
** Seriously. If you are a woman and want to be interviewed for a follow-up to this story, please send a head shot and other ‘tasteful’ photos.