Sep 23, 2011

PROFILE | Autumn De Wilde | Counterculture Photography

Autumn De Wilde, If this is not an album cover then I don't know what is! , 2011

Unknowingly for the past few years I have stumbled across Autumn De Wilde's work time and time again without realizing it. If you've ever seen select album art from Elliott Smith, Jenny Lewis, The Raconteurs, The White Stripes, Beck, and many others you've seen De Wilde at work.


Rather than gaining an conventional education in photography, De Wilde learned from her father Jerry also a celebrated photographer. Jerry De Wilde photographed many famous artists during the 60's and 70's, so it's not surprising that his daughter followed in his footsteps.
Autumn De Wilde, Elliott Smith, 2000

Outside the confines of commercial photography, it has to be mentioned that De Wilde has made a lot of other contributions to the art community. Her 250 Polaroids of The Decemberists for The Impossible Project are breathtaking, and she has also proven herself to be a very capable director. Her personal connection to the majority of her subjects makes her work all the more interesting. She has been following several bands for years, including Death Cab for Cutie and The White Stripes, showing not only dedication for her work, but a severe interest in following up on her subjects. 
Autumn De Wilde, Miranda July, 2011

De Wilde's photography gives a warm feeling, and her use of film makes her pictures even more unique. While viewing her portfolio one gets a sense of home, and can tell that they're not just photos for magazines, especially since there's a distinct lack of manipulation in her photographs. The fact that Photoshop is scarce in her work makes it seem that much more real, personal, and it definitely showcases her genuine skill. When De Wilde's doing black and white the photos are deep and rich, and when she takes her pictures in color the viewer sees the brightest reds and blues.When talking about her process she states:
I imagine myself walking in a circle. The subject is in the center, and we don’t really know each other. I take a picture. They notice for a second, and then continue on with what they are doing. I continue circling and shooting. With each circle, we know each other a little better, and I get closer. Finally, I am shooting hands, fingers, a shoe, an eye, a mouth, the creases in their clothes. After awhile, I don’t notice when I take a picture, and they don’t notice either.


Autumn De Wilde, Shirley Kurata and Elijah Wood, 2011 


It's virtually impossible not to recognize her famous subjects, but the best part is that the viewer truly seems to be able to see a different side of these icons. When looking at commercial photography we often don't view it as an art form. People constantly say things like "anyone can do it", but when you look at De Wilde's photography you ,will soon discover that she's not producing work that just anyone can do. 

- Kassidy Pritchard 




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