People Project 2 By Niamh McInally

For the People Project 2 assignment, I have produced an illustrated presentation which includes information about two portrait photographers; one based pre 1950s and the other based post 1950s. The two portrait photographers I have chosen to study are Edward S. Curtis and Mark Seliger.

Edward S. Curtis

Edward S. Curtis (1868 - 1952) was an American photographer and ethnologist known for photographing the Native American Indians and western culture during 1900 to 1930.

In the summer of 1900, Edward S. Curtis first encountered Native American culture. Having become incredibly involved and impassioned by the power and dignity of these incredible people, Curtis believed he was in a "desperate race against time to document the North American Indian before white expansion and the federal government destroyed what remained of their natives' way of life."

Curtis was given access to the sacred lives of the Native people and so began documenting and creating a record preserving the history of the Native American Indians and their extraordinary culture.,_1905.jpg

For over thirty years, Edward S. Curtis lived amongst 18 different Native American tribes. He began the project to capture the Native American culture before it disappeared as he was aware of the Natives being evicted from their homeland.

Curtis' intent was to photograph the Native American Indians as they had been before their lives and their culture became devastated by contact with European civilisation. Edward S. Curtis has preserved an incredibly important era in American history and provided an opportunity to understand the American Indian experience for future generations.

Mark Seliger

Mark Seliger (1959 - ) is an American photographer with a career spanning over twenty years who is best known for his editorial portrait photographs. Seliger photographs subjects that span the spectrum of global leaders, influencers, celebrities and artists alike.

Mark Seliger studied at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts as a teenager in Houston, then attended East Texas State University where he studied the history of documentary photography.

In 1984, Mark Seliger moved to New York City, then in 1987, he began shooting small assignments for Rolling Stone Magazine. In 1992, he was appointed as Chief Photographer for Rolling Stone Magazine for ten years, where he was responsible for the creation of over 125 magazine covers. Seliger has also photographed covers for GQ, Vanity Fair, and other similar magazines. He now works for Conde Nast Publications and provides magazine covers for some of the biggest names in the editorial world - he photographs subjects that span the spectrum of global leaders, celebrities and artists alike. Seliger is also the host of the award winning photography interview show, “Capture”, and has directed music videos and published several books.

"The photographs he has taken are timeless visualizations of society. His portrait work takes a wide range of subjects, from Pop idols to political figures." -

Mark Seliger’s portraits capture each subject in their own world, giving the viewer an insight into what the subject represents. His style of photography brings together classic styles with more modern looks. To this day, he continues to photograph some of the most influential and recognisable individuals around the world.


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