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David Lachapelle Essay

1137 words - 5 pages

David LaChapelle is an incredible, modern photographer. He combines celebrities with the bizarre. His photography is unique, charged with sexual imagery, and provides a unique view on people you see in the media, today.
I chose an article from American Photo, May/June 2003, as the basis of my research paper on David LaChapelle. The magazine has a nice design. It is easy to read the print, and the titles of topics are always visible. You won't turn a page and have to take a minute to figure out what is going on, on that page.
Although there are many ads in the magazine, I suppose that one shouldn't expect any less; they're mainly ads for photography-type companies and such. This issue is still plentiful in articles, starting off with a page on Henri Cartier-Bresson.
As I skim through American Photo, I finally come to an article on "The 25 Most Important Photographers Now." There's a nice introduction on the first page, about what this article is about, and on the bottom-left corner it starts with the first photographer in the list, Gilles Bensimon. The article has a nice layout, including a picture by each photographer and their name headlined above or below, and each photographer also has a good-sized paragraph about himself or herself.
Many, many pages into the "top 25," David LaChapelle finally appears. The bottom half of the page shows LaChapelle's photograph, "Facial," which was taken for Italian Vogue in 2001 ("David LaChapelle"). The paragraph written about him starts off with a self-explanation of his photography: " My pictures are escapist. For me, pictures are fantasies. At the same time, they're a document of our time." The article goes on to explain his photography with more detail, and basically finished with some of his accomplishments, such as awards he has won and the books he's published.
David LaChapelle was born in Connecticut, in the year of 1969. He took his first photograph at the age of six, while on vacation in Puerto Rico. The image was of his mother posing on a hotel balcony, a drink in hand, "outfitted in a Frederick's Of Hollywood bra top adorned by gold belt buckles" (ARTseenSOHO...). LaChapelle began taking more photographs while in high school, and took his newfound talent to the North Carolina School of the Arts, a prestigious high school of art (David LaChapelle).
At the end of the 70's, David LaChapelle was eighteen and moved from North Carolina to New York's Lower East Side (Staley-Wise Gallery). Once he made his move to NYC, he enrolled in the Arts Student League and the School Of Visual Arts (David LaChapelle). Here he honed his skills as an artist.
LaChapelle was offered his first professional photography job by Andy Warhol, shooting for Interview Magazine (David LaChapelle). LaChapelle started developing his interest in photography by creating fine art images for the magazine (Legends). He also called Interview, "art school" (Staley-Wise Gallery).
He may have gotten one of...

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