Dennison Bertram Photographer

Dennison Bertram Photographer

I’m contacting you now because I am in an online photo competition and I need your vote to help me win in the people’s choice category. It’s a big competition with the winners receiving great

exposure in the photography world—a potentially massive boost for my career

A Short Overview of

Dennison Bertram, Photographer

Born 1981 in USA, is based now in Milan, Italy and Prague, Czech Republic. His website is My father is a painter and when I first got into fashion photography it was through the work of Edward Steichen on whom my father keep several books. His mother is Peggy Brooks-Bertram, poet, playwright, dramatist, educator and co-editor of Go, Tell Michelle: African American Women Write to the New First Lady, winner of 2009 Best Black Book Award.

Developing as a photographer I was influenced by a great deal of artists; from Hemingway for a love of Europe and the beauty of women, to Helmut Newton for the bizarre, the directness, and strength of an image. These days with digital I’m really attracted to the work of Mert & Marcus [Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott] and Camilla Akrans for their talent with color and of course Steven Meisel – (for all the obvious reasons).

Three people you would love to work with: Mert & Marcus (does that count as two?), Karl Lagerfeld, Natasha Poly

Who do you think is one to watch?: I’m going to go with Atsuko Kudo for his work with Latex. Fashion is always recycling, but latex as a mainstream material is still quite daring. While most fashion these days can only be a rehash of what has been done, the hidden, perhaps darker and erotic side of fashion has a lot of room for exploration.

Source: The Ones 2watch

posted 14 June 2010

*   *   *   *   *

Dennis Bertram Website / Dennis Bertram Blog

I realize that maybe I have a responsibility to shoot more non-white models. One could argue it’s an artists duty to show society a face of itself it might rather not see. How will society start to learn that all shades of skin color are beautiful if no one on the inside shows them first?—Dennison Bertram (17 April 2012)

*   *   *   *   *

Video Polaroid Project, Part 1

“The idea behind the project was to create a new dimension to the idea of the ‘polaroid’. Of course, many of the agencies don’t actually use polaroids anymore and somehow the digital ’snaps’ don’t really quite capture the personality of the models in the same way. The models are filmed just being natural, how they are. There is minimal styling, normally just a body suit, leggings or whatever the model is wearing if they have something cool. There is almost never any makeup or other styling, so it’s all really true to the model themselves – their personality. It’s not a regular ‘model video’ where the girls walk around, say their name, talk about their agency. It’s really like a short film just about them.—Dennison Bertram

*   *   *   *   *

Edward Steichen: In High Fashion: The Cond Nast Years 1923-1937

By William A. Ewing

Edward Steichen was chief photographer for “Vogue and Vanity Fair” from 1923 to 1937. During that time, he produced work of unequalled brilliance, putting his exceptional talents to work dramatizing and glamorizing contemporary culture and its achievers in politics, literature, journalism, dance, theatre, opera and, above all, the world of high fashion. This beautifully produced book reproduces the best of Steichens images, all drawn from Conde Nasts archive of more than 2,000 original vintage prints. Until now, no more than a handful of these prints has been exhibited or published. The 1920s and 1930s represent the high point in Steichens photographic career, and the work he did for Conde Nasts influential magazines will stand forever among the most striking creations of 20th-century photography.

Edward Steichen: Lives in Photography

By Todd Brandow  and  William A. Ewing

With his prodigious range, versatility and output, Edward Steichen casts a long shadow in 20th-century photography, and this lushly produced book assesses his legacy. Wending through Steichen’s 70-year career, the book presents his early, impressionistic black-and-white nudes and portraits of luminaries such as Rodin as well as atmospheric still lives and editorial fashion shots for Vogue and Vanity Fair. Steichen experimented and excelled in every genre of photography and even his most commercial work shows more aesthetic consideration than product placement. The images are accompanied by insightful essays from a number of expert critics and curators, all of whom place Steichen in his proper context as one of the most influential and controversial artists of his time, alternately reviled as a parvenu and lauded as the Leonardo of photography. This book nimbly navigates divergent critical responses and brilliantly encapsulates the innovations and transformations of this pioneer of modern photography.—Publishers Weekly

Helmut Newton: Sumo

By June Newton

Now, 10 years after the original publication, Sumo is back in a more economical edition, but one with the same DNA as its unique progenitor. The original Sumo, edited by June Newton, featured over 350 pictures, most published for the first time, covering every aspect of Newton’s outstanding career: from the stunning fashion images that influenced generations of younger photographers, to his powerful, erotic nudes and celebrity portraits. Also included is a booklet with a ‘making of’ section, detailing the meticulous selection process, and the trial and error, experiment and innovation that went into creating the original Sumo, the book that redefined the photographic monograph. However, proud owners of the new edition won’t wrestle with their copy of Sumo. It comes with a unique stand for displaying the book at home

Helmut Newton (1920-2004) was one of the most influential fashion photographers of all time. Born in Berlin, he arrived in Australia in 1940 and married June Brunell (a.k.a. Alice Springs) eight years later. He first achieved international fame in the 1970’s while working principally for French Vogue, and his celebrity and influence grew over the decades. Newton preferred to shoot in streets or interiors, rather than studios. Controversial scenarios, bold lighting, and striking compositions came to form his signature look. In 1990 he was awarded the Grand Prix National for photography; in 1992 the German government awarded him Das Grosse Verdienstkreuz for services to German culture, and he was appointed Officer des Arts, Lettres et Sciences by S.A.S. Princess Caroline of Monaco. In 1996, he was appointed Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by Philippe Douste-Blazy, the French Minister of Culture. Working and living in close companionship with his wife until his death at 83, his images remain as distinctive, seductive and original as ever.

*   *   *   *   *


The Shoot—How Mert and Marcus make everyone look magnificenMert and Marcus have been luring a lot of people to Ibiza recently. Success has elevated them into the ranks of those to whom the world must come—the world, in this case, being hairdressers, stylists, models, makeup artists, and manicurists. Katie Grand, the editor of Pop and Mert and Marcus’s longtime friend and collaborator, told me, “Their finances have changed and their power has changed, which is why we’re here and not in a studio in King’s Cross.”

Throughout the spring and summer, the pair had a new shoot nearly every week. They photographed fall advertising campaigns for Louis Vuitton, Roberto Cavalli, Missoni, Giorgio Armani, Hugo Boss, Bulgari, and Gucci perfume, as well as editorial spreads for Vogue, W, and Pop. Suddenly, their pictures are everywhere—or, at least, that is what is said of them. It is fair to say, anyway, that Mert and Marcus have been turning up increasingly often. The other thing that is said of them is that they came out of nowhere.

“They seem to have just appeared,” Grace Coddington, the creative director of Vogue, said. Or, as Ivan Bart, the director of IMG Models, told the Times not long ago, “They are the new fabulous.”

Mert, 33, is Turkish; Marcus, 34, is Welsh. Mert is short and chubby; Marcus is tall and slim. Mert is jovial, with a husky laugh; Marcus is measured, with a mischievous grin. When they work, they take turns with the camera—sometimes snatching it from each other—and although Mert’s taste may incline a bit more toward campy glamour and Marcus’s more toward ironic cool, the results rarely, if ever, betray the dominance of one man’s aesthetic over the other’s. “When you’re looking at the film, you can’t tell which of them had the camera,” Grand said.—NewYorker

*   *   *   *   *

Camilla Akrans is a fashion photographer from Sweden currently killing it in New York. . . She gives a lesson in color blocking for her most recent work in the June-July issue of Harper’s Bazaar US. Aided by fashion editor Brana Wolf, Akrans creates a colorful story starring model Jacquelyn Jablonski in luxe attire from the likes of Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors and Yves Saint Laurent.—FashionGoneRogue

*   *   *   *   *

[Steven] Meisel—as one of the most powerful photographers in the fashion industry—is credited with “discovering” or promoting the careers of many successful models, including top models Linda Evangelista, Naomi Campbell, Christy Turlington, Kristen McMenamy, Amber Valletta, Sasha Pivovarova, Irina Kulikova, Iris Strubegger, Lara Stone, Coco Rocha, Caroline Trentini, Liya Kebede, Karen Elson, Kara Young and Raquel Zimmerman, propelling them to fame by regularly featuring them in Vogue and various campaigns, notably Prada, considered one of the most desired campaigns in the business. Meisel’s influence and training seems to also extend past models.

He used his influence among the fashion elite to create an issue of Vogue that would show only black models. The issue was released in July 2008 with the purpose of addressing the racism seen lately in fashion magazines, runways, and advertising campaigns. He also launched the career of Ross Van Der Heide, a young fashion designer, by showing Ross’s artwork to Anna Sui. Wikipedia

*   *   *   *   *


Ernest Withers  / Carrie Mae Weems  /  Julian Dimock  / Jerry Taliaferro  / Spring Ulmer

J. Nash Porter  / The Willie Harris Collection  /  Eugene Redmond

Other Visual Artists

Kimathi Donkor / Chuck Siler  / Bev Jenai   / John Scott  / Bernard Hoyes 

 Claire Carew / Jane Musoke-Nteyafas / Robert “Kaki” McQueen  / Romare Bearden

*   *   *   *   *

Wake Up Everybody—Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes (1975)


*   *   *   *   *

Blacks in Hispanic Literature: Critical Essays

Edited by Miriam DeCosta-Willis 

Blacks in Hispanic Literature is a collection of fourteen essays by scholars and creative writers from Africa and the Americas. Called one of two significant critical works on Afro-Hispanic literature to appear in the late 1970s, it includes the pioneering studies of Carter G. Woodson and Valaurez B. Spratlin, published in the 1930s, as well as the essays of scholars whose interpretations were shaped by the Black aesthetic. The early essays, primarily of the Black-as-subject in Spanish medieval and Golden Age literature, provide an historical context for understanding 20th-century creative works by African-descended, Hispanophone writers, such as Cuban Nicolás Guillén and Ecuadorean poet, novelist, and scholar Adalberto Ortiz, whose essay analyzes the significance of Negritude in Latin America. This collaborative text set the tone for later conferences in which writers and scholars worked together to promote, disseminate, and critique the literature of Spanish-speaking people of African descent. . . . Cited by a literary critic in 2004 as “the seminal study in the field of Afro-Hispanic Literature . . . on which most scholars in the field ‘cut their teeth’.”

*   *   *   *   *

Age of Silver: Encounters with Great Photographers

By John Loengard

Age of Silver is iconic American photographer John Loengard’s ode to the art form to which he dedicated his life. Loengard, a longtime staff photographer and editor for LIFE magazine and other publications, spent years documenting modern life for the benefit of the American public. Over the years he trained his camera on dignitaries, artists, athletes, intellectuals, blue and whitecollar workers, urban and natural landscapes, manmade objects, and people of all types engaged in the act of living. In Age of Silver, Loengard gathers his portraits of some of the most important photographers of the last half-century, including Annie Leibovitz, Ansel Adams, Man Ray, Richard Avedon, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and many, many others. Loengard caught them at home and in the studio; posed portraits and candid shots of the artists at work and at rest.   Complimenting these revealing, expertly composed portraits are elegant photographs of the artists holding their favorite or most revered negatives. This extra dimension to the project offers an inside peek at the artistic process and is a stark reminder of the physicality of the photographic practice at a time before the current wave of digital dominance. There is no more honest or faithful reproduction of life existent in the world of image making than original, untouched silver negatives.   Far from an attempt to put forth a singular definition of modern photographic practice, this beautifully printed, duotone monograph instead presents evidence of the unique vision and extremely personal style of every artist pictured. Annie Leibovitz is quoted in her caption as once saying, “I am always perplexed when people say that a photograph has captured someone. A photograph is just a piece of them in a moment. It seems presumptuous to think you can get more than that.” —PowerhouseBooks

update 17 April 2012

Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.