“I myself have always stood in the awe of the camera. I recognize it for the instrument it is, part Stradivarius, part scalpel.”

Deep Sea Diver

Irving Penn died at the age of 92, today.

I’ve alwas been drawn to and inspired by his portraits.  I seek out old face with wrinkles so deep that the cast shadows, because I imagine how it would look in an Irving Penn styled black and white shot.

Penn has shot tribesmen, models, hippies, extremely influential artists alike. He has found a way to highlight the features that make that an individual not only unique, but beautiful while not adjusting a thing about them. He literally knew better than anyone, how to put them in the right light.

Below are some of my favorite Irving Penn shots.


Row 1: Banett Newman, Yves Saint Laurent, Miles Davis, Phillip Roth

Row 2: Vogue shot, Alberto Giacometti, James Van Der Zee, Man from Newguinea

Row 3: Truman Capote, S.J. Perelman, Pablo Picasso, Richard Avedon


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6 Responses to ““I myself have always stood in the awe of the camera. I recognize it for the instrument it is, part Stradivarius, part scalpel.””

  1. ! Says:

    i think i have seen one of your pics that might of been inspired by the guy you are talking about.

    is it the one where you are pulling your bottom lip and its all shadowy?

    well anyway, pretty sad that us people are here one day and gone the next.some of us are here to be alone and just think… life is grand!!

    some are here to be struck by lightning
    some are here to know shakespear
    some are here to dance
    some are here to be mothers
    some are here to have and ear for music
    some are here to sit by a river
    and some people are here to be ARTISTS!!!

    -the curious case of benjamin button-

  2. Mary Says:

    It’s interesting to me that all but one of these are photos of men. I hate to pull the annoying feminist “we are underrepresented” card, but check out how they are all dudes except the one woman who doesn’t have a name. I realize I’m missing the point. Sorry. The photos are great and all, I just was surprised.

    • chloe Says:

      I pulled all of these photos of men without even realizing.
      He is so well known for the for he did of women his whole life. Every time I see an eye catching photo in a fashion magazine it is inedibly by him or someone he has had an influence over.
      But the photos of men are different. Not al men look naturally charming. I guess I personally appreciate the male portraits most because I like the hetro beauty he finds in masculine features.

  3. Scott Says:

    Irving Penn was my artistic hero! First encountering his images, years ago… was as though finding an answer to many of my questions and or yearnings…

  4. JC Says:

    Mary, your observations will be noted, and while I reflect on them I would like for you to go make me a sandwich.

  5. Henrikson Says:

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