Sunday, March 28, 2010

RIP Peter Gowland

In case you're unaware of it, photographer Peter Gowland passed away on March 17, 2010. If you're a pretty girl shooter, you ought to be acquainted with Gowland's work and his many contributions to photography, much of it to the art and craft of glamour and nude art photography.

I'd be surprised if you've never seen any of Peter Gowland's pictures, perhaps less surprised if you're not aware of who snapped them. Some of his work with Jane Mansfield is iconic. (Gowland was, I believe, the first to shoot her after she arrived in Hollywood from her home state of Texas.)

The most constant themes in Gowland's work were the beach and water. (Southern California beaches, of course.) Peter Gowland and his wife, Alice, lived for many years in their SoCal studio home quite near California's Will Rogers State Beach and spent considerable time there.

With Alice Gowland performing the writing chores and Peter doing what he loved best, photography, the Gowlands published 25 books: Many of them focused on glamour and nude photography.

The DIY crowd should also be impressed with Gowland's accomplishments. Gowland was famous for MacGyvering all manner of lighting and grip gear. He also designed and built cameras: The Gowlandflex is one example.

If you have some spare time, I recommend going through Peter Gowland's website. It tracks the photographic life of one of the most important contributors to this thing that so many of us pursue: this pretty girl shooting thing.

Rest in Peace Peter Gowland.


Bill Giles said...

I do indeed regret his passing. He made one of the first glamour photography videos that I saw and I still like to see him in action. I learned a lot from him.

Don said...

I have been a fan of Peter Gowland for about 45 years, since my dad told me that he was the one to study to learn about light. And yes, I was saddened by his passing. I guess that you knew that his wife/partner Alice recently passed also.
His home studio was something to behold. He was the first, that I knew of to eliminate light stands by suspending his strobes from the ceiling. There is nothing quite like a clear studio floor.
If you ever saw one of his twin lens reflex 4x5's or 5x7's, it would blow your mind.
Thanks for the inspiration Peter.
The Photodawg

Anonymous said...

It was really a great loss for our trade :(, what´s even more sad is that PDN took more than 3 days to find out he was dead while they always post Laforet´s or Jarvis´ stuff one second later it appears in the net :/