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The Elegant Portraiture of Timothy Greenfield-Sanders
All Photos © Timothy Greenfield-Sanders
Simple yet revealing, his portraits are direct and get right to the heart of the subject. Timothy Greenfield-Sanders prefers to strip away pretentiousness when portraying political figures, entertainers, artists, musicians and other intriguing personalities. His backdrops never distract from the subject, and he often uses a single light source to mimic natural light. His work has elevated him to one of the most acclaimed portrait photographers of our time.
Learning from the Masters
In addition to this once-in-a-lifetime experience, he took the opportunity
to build an impressive portfolio of many of the biggest names in Hollywood.
His access to these stars bolstered his reputation as a celebrity shooter and
he soon got work taking portraits for Interview and People magazines. “I
began loving portrait photography more than making films,” he comments.
In 1979, poet Mark Strand came to Greenfield-Sanders’ studio to be photographed
for Avenue magazine. After admiring the photographer’s style, Strand asked
him where he was showing his work. Greenfield-Sanders replied, “I’m
not showing anywhere,” so Strand promptly called Marcuse Pfeiffer, a prominent
art dealer, who launched Greenfield-Sanders’ first New York gallery showings.
His editorial work developed his reputation as a photographer who created
serious, direct, and elegant portraits. As his reputation grew, he became one
of the elite group who are hired to photograph people in the public eye, such
as John Malkovich, Alec Baldwin, Hillary Clinton, Nicole Kidman, and Colin Powell,
among many others. In a sense, he had come full circle from his AFI days; “A
natural progression for me,” he says.
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