A good few years ago, I stumbled across a print which regrettably I didn’t buy but which has stuck in my mind ever since.
It was a photograph of an impossibly glamorous fifties beauty perched on the prow of an equally elegant yacht. The colour, the light, the composition had me rapt for ages. It was spectacular and understated all at once. Damn I wish I’d bought it.
It wasn’t taken by Slim Aarons but it could have been.
Slim Aarons was an American photographer who made his name photographing the the socialites, movie stars and jet-setters of American and European society throughout the fifties, sixties and seventies.
He described his career as “photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places” and in a fabulous case of life imitating art, apparently Alfred Hitchcock based Jimmy Stewart’s apartment in Rear Window on Slim’s own apartment, such was his fame and acceptance by the high society of the time.
I love his work. I especially love the top image ‘Poolside Gossip’. Just wonderful isn’t it? Palm Springs in the 1970s. So evocative. You can make up a whole back story for each of the women and just look at that house. Awesome.
The Kings of Hollywood: Clark Gable, Van Heflin Gary Cooper and James Stewart at a New Year’s Eve party, 1957.
I wonder how long he waited for that perfect shot to materialise? Love it.