The Chris Buck

The Chris Buck

Chris Buck enjoys taking pictures and has been doing so professionally for 26 years.

Turn of the Century Portraiture

Over the years I’ve come up with countless ideas for photo projects, books and exhibitions; most of them don’t go anywhere but I always manage to come up with clever or stupid titles. So when Galerie Youn urgently needed a name for our show I was ready with the grand and pompous “Turn of the Century Portraiture”. Amazingly, they went with it.

Hopefully the exhibition itself will be grand and pompous itself as a lot of thought and energy has gone into the printing of it. The black-and-white prints were done by Griffin Editions, with a mix of traditional enlarger prints and digital LE (Laser Exposed), both on fibre paper. Laurent Girard, Eric Jeffreys and Grace Pomeroy are my heroes over there.

The color prints are by my friend and loyal compatriot Carl Saytor of Luxlab. Carl and I have worked on my color prints for many years and I always feel well taken care of in his hands.

My wife and I head up to Montreal tomorrow to celebrate the exhibition, and to drink lots of red wine and eat bagels.

Top Image: A 40x50” Jay-Z from 1998 being dried by a fan at the Manhattan location of Griffin Editions. Shot on 4x5” film, this looks so sweet so large.

Second Image: Posing with final 40x50” prints of Bryan Cranston & Jon Hamm (2007), and President Obama (2013). This iPhone snap does not do these prints justice (surprisingly).

Third and Fourth Images: The show features five very large prints and 22 at 20x24”. Amongst these are a few images rarely seen before, including these portraits of David Cronenberg (2005), and Cindy Sherman (1997).

Bottom Image: The invite to the VIP event tomorrow evening. Note the phrase “World Renowned Photographer.” There is also a more casual reception on Saturday September 13th at 2 PM - all are welcome, so please come.

The New New Pornographers

The New Pornographers have just released a new album, Brill Bruisers, and I’m pleased to say that I shot the publicity photos. I traveled with the band in 2001 and did a couple of group shots then and have been listening ever since. 

The label asked that I come up with some ideas for pictures as they hoped to push things a little visually and conceptually. The band was game, doing a Beatles Avedon homage for one shot, and a cliche family portrait wearing button-down white shirts for another, but drew the line at my idea of a formal band shot with one member taking a hit off of a bong. One of the guys explained, “It’s bad enough crossing the border from Canada with the name ‘New Pornographers’, then add to that a quick Google search that shows photos of us smoking a bong.”

Behind-the-scenes photos by Kurt Dahle.

keyframedaily:

Harry Dean Stanton by Chris Buck.

My wife and I watched the Harry Dean Stanton documentary Partly Fiction this past week so it seems fitting that I found my portrait of him on Tumblr today.
This was our second set-up and as Harry was standing there he blurted out, “How long is this going to f**king take?” In a steady voice I told him that we had a number of shots planned and that we’d likely be shooting for another two hours. He had no response to this and was patient and co-operative for the rest of the session.

keyframedaily:

Harry Dean Stanton by Chris Buck.

My wife and I watched the Harry Dean Stanton documentary Partly Fiction this past week so it seems fitting that I found my portrait of him on Tumblr today.

This was our second set-up and as Harry was standing there he blurted out, “How long is this going to f**king take?” In a steady voice I told him that we had a number of shots planned and that we’d likely be shooting for another two hours. He had no response to this and was patient and co-operative for the rest of the session.

typestache:

Typestache on Andrew Dice Clay on photo by Chris Buck

typestache:

Typestache on Andrew Dice Clay on photo by Chris Buck

Here’s to the Ladies Who Lunch 
When Baz Bagel opened around the corner from us in May my wife and I couldn’t wait to celebrate the latest addition to the Jewish food revival on the Lower East Side (Black Seed and the Russ & Daughters Cafe had only opened months before). We took our daughter and ordered a bunch of dishes to share - Nova Scotia lox with scrabbled eggs, fresh bagels and even an appetizer platter.
Like seasoned pros the staff soon brought out a coloring book for our four-year-old. But this one was different, it featured line drawing illustrations of fashionable older New Yorkers; called Advanced Style. Olive was soon hard at work bringing her distinctive rainbow palette to a woman sporting big glasses and a tie and jacket. I said to my wife, “It looks like Elaine Stritch.” She came back, “It IS Elaine Stritch.”
The staff were pleased with Olive’s take on Ms. Stritch and added it to their collection, and since her passing last Thursday it’s hung prominently behind the counter as a memorial to the greatest lady who lunched.

Here’s to the Ladies Who Lunch 

When Baz Bagel opened around the corner from us in May my wife and I couldn’t wait to celebrate the latest addition to the Jewish food revival on the Lower East Side (Black Seed and the Russ & Daughters Cafe had only opened months before). We took our daughter and ordered a bunch of dishes to share - Nova Scotia lox with scrabbled eggs, fresh bagels and even an appetizer platter.

Like seasoned pros the staff soon brought out a coloring book for our four-year-old. But this one was different, it featured line drawing illustrations of fashionable older New Yorkers; called Advanced Style. Olive was soon hard at work bringing her distinctive rainbow palette to a woman sporting big glasses and a tie and jacket. I said to my wife, “It looks like Elaine Stritch.” She came back, “It IS Elaine Stritch.”

The staff were pleased with Olive’s take on Ms. Stritch and added it to their collection, and since her passing last Thursday it’s hung prominently behind the counter as a memorial to the greatest lady who lunched.

Louisiana in New York

Edwin Washington Edwards is running for the House of Representatives this fall so he is making himself available for interviews and photographs. And thank God for that!

He is an 86-year-old three-time Governor, who’s done time essentially for “practicing the Louisiana way of politics,” married a bombshell prison pen pal in her thirties AND has sired a son with her. If that’s not story enough he’s famous for his colorful quips in a state known for political color.

We shot for many hours for New York Magazine on a beautiful July afternoon in the small town of Gonzales, LA; I very much appreciate the energy and patience that Edwards and his wife Trina brought to the session.

After our last set-up I was driving the Governor home and told him that I recognized how boring it can be being the photo subject. He paused, looked at me with a hint of a smile, “I’m not a virgin, I’ve been had before.” God bless America!

24 Years in New York
24 years ago today I moved to New York from my parent’s basement in Etobicoke, Ontario. Here I am at work in my Williamsburg apt about eight months in. Instead of a computer monitor to look at I have two Dutch self-portraits.

24 Years in New York

24 years ago today I moved to New York from my parent’s basement in Etobicoke, Ontario. Here I am at work in my Williamsburg apt about eight months in. Instead of a computer monitor to look at I have two Dutch self-portraits.

Ford Tough
Eileen Ford was not an easy-going person and I loved her for it. She didn’t say much and when she did it was direct and clipped. “I’m too scared to go under the knife,” she offered up unsolicited as an explanation for not getting face work done.
I am a particular fan of Irving Penn’s portraits of the greats of the fashion industry of the 1950s and hoped to take these as inspiration for my sitting with Ms. Ford in 2003. Penn didn’t make light “fashion portraits” but instead showed a more authentic respect by photographing the fashion icons as complicated vulnerable human beings.

Ford Tough

Eileen Ford was not an easy-going person and I loved her for it. She didn’t say much and when she did it was direct and clipped. “I’m too scared to go under the knife,” she offered up unsolicited as an explanation for not getting face work done.

I am a particular fan of Irving Penn’s portraits of the greats of the fashion industry of the 1950s and hoped to take these as inspiration for my sitting with Ms. Ford in 2003. Penn didn’t make light “fashion portraits” but instead showed a more authentic respect by photographing the fashion icons as complicated vulnerable human beings.

FEMA PSA is OK

This campaign has got some legs. It was shot with Deutsch NY and the Ad Council last July and I’m still seeing new placements of it going up. And perhaps the most impressive, I saw it in the background on the Amy Schumer show a couple of weeks ago.

Thank you to Hillary Jackson and Cheryl Masaitis for bringing me into work with Art Directors Joe Mongognia and Brittany Rivera to execute this fun and important PSA. Enjoy the ads, and do please discuss an emergency plan with your family.

Happy Independence Day!
Image: Bruce & Pamela Davis, Tales of the Hamptons story, for New York Magazine 1996

Happy Independence Day!

Image: Bruce & Pamela Davis, Tales of the Hamptons story, for New York Magazine 1996