Albert Watson – Photography Straight to the Vein

Albert Watson is one of the most influential fashion photographers of all time. He’s worked with the world’s greatest personalities and entertainment figures, including Michael Jackson and Steve Jobs. Learn about his story, photography, and passion.

His Life

He was born in 1942 in Scotland, in 1970 he moved to the United States with his wife. He started doing small photography jobs. The art director of Max Factor offered him his first fashion job. The result was so impressive, that he quickly began to attract the attention of bigmagazines and powerful brands.

Albert Watson Photography Straight to the Vein His Life - Albert Watson - Photography Straight to the Vein

He’s got 100 covers of Vogue and 40 covers of Rolling Stone. One of the most famous is the one taken from Alfred Hitchcock for the 1973 Christmas edition of Harper’s Bazaar where he holds a goose. It was the first time he worked with someone famous. According to him, it’s his most important photo, it helped him gain confidence.

Personal Techniques and Influence

His technique is based on clean lighting. For him, less is more. His work is a combination of graphic design, film, and his passion for photography.

Watson’s influence was not only on the covers of the most famous magazines. He directed more than 100 commercials and worked in the cinema making iconic posters for films such as Memoirs of a Geisha, Kill Bill, and The Da Vinci Code.


In 2010 he received a Centenary Medal from the Royal Photographic Society and in 2015 he was awarded The Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.

Watson was born blind in his right eye. His first contact with photography was at age 15 with an old Kodak camera belonging to his father. His work continues to be exhibited in major galleries and museums around the world.

Editorial, Catalog, High Fashion, and Street Fashion Photography – Learn the Differences

The fashion photography industry is divided into several categories. It’s not just about creating a good photo and selling it. It is necessary to know the differences and types found in this glamorous industry.

Fashion Photography and the Glamorous Life

Fashion photography focuses on enhancing the aesthetics of the products you want to sell such as wallets, jewelry, clothes, and shoes, among others. Here the photographer must know how to highlight them without letting the model go unnoticed.

It is about a balance between the products enhancing the beauty of the model and the model who also enhances the products. The places where these photoshoots are held, whether outdoor or indoor, play a complementary role in everything.

Editorial Catalog High Fashion and Street Fashion Photography Learn the Differences Fashion Photography - Editorial, Catalog, High Fashion, and Street Fashion Photography - Learn the Differences

Types of Fashion Photography

These styles are what have played the most important role over the years. Lately, street style has been gaining ground. Editorial and Haute Couture photography have a similar style that makes them a little more difficult to distinguish from one another.

Editorial Fashion Photography

It’s the most demanded by magazines. Pieces of clothing wore day and night, develop a powerful story where the model’s life is shown (embodying some character) from the moment she wakes up in the morning until it ends at night.

High Fashion Photography

In this type of photography, big fashion houses usually use world-famous actresses, actors, or supermodels as their image. Here, all the elements such as wardrobe, lighting, make-up, and hairstyle work together to create the perfect image far from reality.

Catalog Photography

Everything in the catalogues is much less elaborate. The photographs are simple so that the products you want to sell are seen. They are usually taken in basic photography studios or somewhere not so far away.

Street Style Photography

It is usually the most fun of all. Here the spotlight is on the street, on the daily lives of the people who give their clothes that fresh touch. The models usually represent real-life people, who want to set trends with a statement on their clothes that convey who they are and what they feel.

You must know the differences between these styles if you want to take up fashion photography. Once you know the differences and work on creating statements, everything else will come easily with hard work.

Why is Fashion Photography a Profitable yet Difficult Career to Succeed In?

Fashion photography is perhaps the most desired career for all aspiring photographers. What makes it difficult is that to succeed you don’t have to be the best at capturing the best angles, but you have to be the best at having important contacts.

In addition to this, you must be aware that to achieve this, you must live where fashion breathes like Milan, New York, Paris, or London.You must have tireless creativity to create unique pictures. To begin with, you must be willing to receive only the per diem for production.

Why is Fashion Photography a Profitable yet Difficult Career to Succeed In fashion shoot - Why is Fashion Photography a Profitable yet Difficult Career to Succeed In?

To achieve perfect fashion photography, you need to have your own trusted team including stylist, makeup artist, and an assistant who has the same vision as you. This can take quite some time.

Some clients will want to walk all over you, giving you their opinions about the lights or the model’s poses. At these times, you have to make everyone respect your opinion and kindly say NO. This requires a lot of courage.

Why is Fashion Photography a Profitable yet Difficult Career to Succeed In photographer - Why is Fashion Photography a Profitable yet Difficult Career to Succeed In?

Your portfolio and your social networks should always be updated. You have to update it every month, filling it with pictures that show that you know how to create trends and that you can popularize them. Show that you can be a photo creator while being able to solve any inconvenience that comes up at the last minute.

Fashion photography is a creative expression that focuses on getting people to buy. At the end of the day, your job should be to get people’s attention to buy a certain product. No matter how creative you are this always ends up taking a back seat.