Karsch

Discussion in 'Photographers' started by Ka, Jun 27, 2004.

  1. Ka

    Ka Member

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    After a shoot yesterday, a client comparted me to a photographer by name of KARSCH. Not being familiar with names, can anyone here point me in the direction to a site where I can see some examples. The Karsch in question is the black and white photographer who did portraits of Hemingway, Einstein and the like.

    just curious...
    thanks.
    ka
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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  3. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Yousuf Karsh is a Canadian portrait photographer out of the nations capital in Ottawa. He is/was probably the leading "portrait" photographer on the planet. He made his name internationally partly because he approached visiting leaders to Canada and requested the opportunity to photograph them. Later on the leaders were the ones that requested him.

    He later travelled the world photographing famous people, artists, leaders and others, and his work was published in many magazines including Life.

    It is a great compliment to be compared to him. Congratulations.


    Michael McBlane
     
  4. gr82bart

    gr82bart Subscriber

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    Wow! Your work must be truly marvelous to be compared to Yousuf Karsh. He is one of the great masters like Adams and Weston. All his negatives are considered national treasures in Canada and are permanently stored in the National Gallery in Ottawa.

    Art.
     
  5. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

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    If you're interested in Karsh's work there is now a retrospective that you can usually find at about 50% off on the internet because there were so many remaindered copies.

    High compliments indeed, congratulations!
     
  6. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi karen, that is a great compliment, congratulations!

    one of his books is on ebay now (some of the portraits are on the selling pages)
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=378&item=6908301375&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW[

    another book to look out for is --- "portraits of greatness" really nice printing if you can find it :smile:

    when karsh died he gave a lot of credit to his now unknown mentor, a boston photographer named john garo. he worked between the 1890s and 1930s and was the first american photographer to have an exhibition on london. like karsh after him, garo photographed heads of state, artists and famous people of his time. some refer to the way he photographed as "the garo way" . he was one of the first to borrow "chiaroscuro" lighting from the world of painting and use it in portrait photography. (rembrant lighting). he is also credited as being one of the people that brought platinum printing back to life in the years around WW1. at some point, george eastman asked him to be in charge of kodak's photofinishing operation. garo turned down the job saying that he was an artist, not a technician. in the 1930s he died poor and now he is virtually unknown.

    i've been lucky enough to see some of his portraits as well as his pictorialist landscape work. there is a frame studio in boston's back bay that has a hand colored platinum print of jamaica pond: pretty amazing stuff. some of garos's work is in the library of congress, some is in personal collections. alot was lost because after his death, all his negatives mysteriously disappeared from his studio.

    again, congratulations :smile:

    - john
     
  7. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

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  8. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    This is maybe my favorite portrait ever. Like it was painted with radioactive butter. Reminds me of his 4th Symphony, my favorite.
     
  9. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    What really made Karsch such an extraordinary portrait photographer was how he managed to show the character of his subjects in a way that no one else seemed to be able to do.

    The following link is to his famous picture of Winston Churchill and the story of how he accomplished *that look*.

    http://www.mysteriesofcanada.com/Canada/karsh_on_churchill.htm
     
  10. Ka

    Ka Member

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    Thank you for the information and links. I can only hope that I will be able to live up to the compliment. Chiaroscuro is my thing... perhaps I am on my way. One can but hope.
     
  11. Ka

    Ka Member

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    Did Karsch take the image of J.P. Morgan, sitting in the leather chair with his hands on the steel arm-rests?
     
  12. Shesh

    Shesh Member

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    You may be referring to the picture taken by Edward Steichen. It was one of his best known images. It does have a style similar to Karsch's churchill portrait.
     
  13. Ka

    Ka Member

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    Thanks, Shesh, I have always wanted to know the author of that image.
     
  14. Magic Rat

    Magic Rat Member

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  15. Ka

    Ka Member

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  16. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    The image is actually a Steichen, not a Curtis as that link would lead you to believe. I see you live in New York. An original of that image is on display right now at the Guggenheim in the 'Hands' exhibition. Just saw it two days ago. Interesting exhibit.
     
  17. Ka

    Ka Member

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    Guggenheim is a 5 hour drive from my place... close... far.
     
  18. Ka

    Ka Member

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    His name wasn't Edward Steichen Curtis, was it?
     
  19. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

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    First, where can I get some of that "radioactive butter"?

    Second, one of the interesting things about the Steichen image of JP Morgan is that in the print only the part of the armrest ahead of his left hand shows and it looks just like Morgan is holding a dagger in his hand. Also, this print was shown to Morgan shortly after it was made and he did not like it. Steichen latter produced the print and included it in a gallery show. Someone saw it and told Morgan who upon seeing it thought it was a great image and wanted to purchase it. Stiechen refused to sell the print to the great JP Morgan.
     
  20. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Close, is was Edward Sheriff Curtis...isn't the internet great. BTW, Curtis also used Orotones for a lot of his work..should check them out, very different.

    As to Karsch, his work is some of the best, his Churchill is one of my favorites
     
  21. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    You can't get it, you have to make it. The best instruction on how to concoct it can be obtained at http://www.michaelandpaula.com.
     
  22. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    I have always been fascinated by the comments I've read about various "icons" of photography on when quized about the reactions of their subjects, how they related that the subject did not initially like their portrait.

    Often it seems that when others raved about the portrait, did the subject then do an about turn and say how they also love the portrait.

    Luckily for many of these icons, they were not commissioned by the subject in the first place so they never really cared too much about the response from the subject.

    Unfortunately, for us schmucks doing portrait work, we indeed are commissioned by the subject, and must please the subject. Life's a bitch.

    On reading many things about, and by Karsh over the years, he often related how initially some of his subject even hated the portraits. Many came around over the years but many didn't. Taking photographs of bigger than life people with equally enlarged egos may have been a bit trying as well.


    Michael McBlane
     
  23. Bill Mitchell

    Bill Mitchell Member

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    A couple of months ago, my latest National Geographic arrived and, as usual, I removed the brown paper wrapper and put it (the magazine, not the wrapper) on the counter in the John for future research. The next day I opened it at random (the magazine, not the John) and there was a photograph I immediately recognized as Hillary, photographed by Karsh. Now I don't believe that I've ever seen a picture of him before (except in his mountain climbing duds), but the presentation was so strong that I knew him right away. THAT's the kind of work that Karsh did!
     
  24. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Now that explained it. It was Sir Edmund, not Ms. Clinton! :tongue:

    You had me wondering there for a little...