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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A Perspective: Old Photographers - New Photographers - by Allen Henson

Antoine Verglas
There are a lot of photographers now-a-days, easily a hundred times more than the “film days". Then, I’d speculate there was a certain discipline and respect for the process. Film’s expensive and developing it on the fly a meticulous process that requires a certain technical/chemical aptitude. Now a visit to Best Buy and 30 minutes worth of YouTube tutorials and everyone thinks they can throw their hat in the ring and contend. I'm one of the Best Buy generation of photographers. Without mentorship, or education it's been a fairly painstaking process riddled with growing pains. Every now and then I really want my hat back. Thank God for YouTube tutorials right?

I'm glad however I'm not a member of the old guard. I can't imagine seeing the landscape of this industry shift from the glory days of big budgets to this at times flailing amputee of a trade that it is. If I had that means of comparison, I'd lose my mind. Being a photographer was a trade and now for a majority of photographers more of an accessory, a fad or something lightheartedly tossed around like wearing old Canon AE-1.

To the old guard, the ability to adapt and evolve is incalculable and the only thing that will enable many of you more seasoned artists and staples of our industry to continue moving forward. Without that capacity you're a dinosaur, a docile exhibit or catalogue of days passed.  

There are however exceptions and beacons of hope. It's encouraging to talk to a tried and true artist who's been able to contend and bridge the chasm. When you see an artist maintain status and relevance through compelling imagery, an unmistakable brand and that ability to evolve. It’s a good thing, a very good thing.

I recently sat down with Antoine Verglas, a photographer who was shooting these definitive 90’s supermodels while I was still playing with plastic toy soldiers. He’s an institution, easily one of the most influential photographers of our era.

(1)In the 1990s Antoine Verglas introduced a new style of fashion photography when he captured models Stephanie Seymour, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer and Cindy Crawford in a series of intimate, documentary style photographs that ran in several international editions of Elle magazine. Prior to that fashion editorials were highly poised. Antoine Verglas' photographs were more candid and uninhibited, with natural light. The guy is legendary; then and now.

In an ever multiplying landscape of artists the only way to stay relevant, to stay ahead of the pack really, is to be the best... or damn close.   


Meet Our Featured Members of the Month

Get to know our featured members for the month of July! Our featured members represent the best of the best in the ModelWire Network community, where their skill and professionalism shines through in their portfolios. If you are interested in being considered as a featured member in an upcoming month, simply email us featured@modelwirenetwork.com. You can contact any of our current featured members by sending them a message via your MWN account.


J Lynne, born Jessica Lynne Harris, is a model out of Philadelphia, PA. She has done fashion, commercial, runway, and everything in between; with her versatile look, she is able to cover the spectrum. Being tall and slim her whole life, she has always been told she should get into this industry, but focusing on academics at the urge of her mother, she paid it no mind. However, during her first year of college in Dallas, TX, tryouts were being held for America's Next Top Model only two train stops away. Too convenient to pass up, J Lynne attended the auditions, having no previous modeling experience. Out of the 15,000 girls who tried out, she made it to the final 32! Ever since then she has built her portfolio with a fashion and commercial focus, and is now agency represented in Philadelphia by the Reinhard Agency. To date she has taken part in many runway gigs, including NYFW and MBFW-NYC.


Building his first darkroom at the age of 9, Josh Sailor has always been in love with photography. And beauty. Starting with a fascination of architecture and shape, evolving over the years towards a true love of the human spirit and forms it takes, Josh's eye focuses with love and adoration on all that is human beauty. From crisp, clean, and colorful imagery, to edgy, revealing and sexy B&W work, beauty is his theme and passion. Whether lifestyle, fashion, or commercial - all work is "beauty photography" to Josh.

Who is your favorite photographer of all time?
My favorite photographer of all time has to be Helmut Newton, for his love of the stark and sexy form and black and white capture.
What inspires you?
Beauty is always my inspiration. Whether the beauty of a desert landscape, a sunset, a baby's clear face, a great-looking figure, or a perfect face.
What do you look for when selecting a model to work with?
The number one thing I look for in a model is a sense of mystery...a feeling that I'd want to know them. The second is professionalism. I want a model to make my job easier and make the client and myself look great.
What kind of camera/equipment do you use?
I love Nikon optics and low-light clarity for my natural light work, but prefer Hasselblad medium format for studio capture because of its density and smooth gradations.
What is your personal style?
I like to think of my personal style as a mixture of lone-cowboy and Euro-weenie.
What is your favorite project you have worked on?
Certainly my favorite project of all time is the book I have just completed the photography for and am now editing. To complete it, I had to photography 52 models on 52 separate shoots. It's tentatively titled "52." A book about beauty - a true labor of love. 


Hannah Sherer is a makeup artist based in Los Angeles. From a very young age, she discovered the beauty of the world through many different mediums, but most prominently through her love for art. When she was 13, she started as an art teacher's assistant helping children develop and discover their artistic abilities. In the last few years, she has chosen to pursue cinema and print makeup as her professional medium, working on many short films, photo shoots, and theatre productions to build her portfolio. Most recently, she was brought on as the head makeup artist for a national television commercial.

Hannah is currently attending the Make Up Designory's Master Makeup Artist program. She has also been working in LA as a Beauty Advisor for Macy's and has knowledge of many of the makeup lines sold in store. Hannah brings the skills and experiences she has attained from both formal jobs and from her education into the workplace. She is passionate about both beauty and specialFX makeup and loves to be creative with both.


Gayla Belay-Iyamu is a celebrity hair stylist for film, television commercial, and photo shoots. For more than 15 years, Gayla has been crafting some of the most stylish hair designs in the industry as a master cutter, trainer, and texture specialist. She has extensively developed corrective-color and hair cutting techniques with an artist's flair and an impeccable attention to detail. Her confident attitude and keen attention to detail have elevated her as one of the most highly regarded master stylists in the country.

She regularly styles at major fashion shows, photo shoots, video shoots, basic to advanced training classes, beauty trade shows worldwide, modeling agencies, and special-occasion events.

Who is your favorite hair stylist of all time?
John Atchison and Olive Benson
What inspires you?
I have always been very passionate about the hair business, the creativity and final result.
What is your favorite project you have worked on?
One of my recent film projects, The Man in 3D, from best selling author Carl Weber. 
What is your personal style?
What genre does your work focus on?
My work mostly focuses on films, photo shoots, and television.
Who is your favorite band or singer of all time?
Aretha Franklin


MJayStyles is a wardrobe stylist based in LA looking to meet other talented artists and photographers to collaborate with and build her portfolio. MJayStyles has been exploring her creative side by styling, and maybe creating vision boards when she has the free time. Her experience is based on what can be created as a team. MJayStyles is interested in lifestyle, street wear fashion, and editorial high fashion concepts.