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During his three decades of work at Rolling stone, cinematographer and creative Jodi Peckman has developed a habit. She spent most of her time overseeing photoshoots of music and movie stars, but part of her job was also combing through the paparazzi snaps offered by stockbrokers. She chose images of celebrities at concerts, parties and premieres and they were featured in the Random Notes section of the magazine. But while she was there, she printed photos of those same celebrities at airports – waiting for planes, dragging bags, killing time – and pinned them to a bulletin board on her office wall.
“I don’t know why I started,” Peckman said on a recent phone call. “I’m really into fashion, so maybe part of that was just looking at people’s clothes.” But there was something else that attracted him. “Sometimes I would fall in love with an image just because it was a really good photograph. The paparazzi don’t have a lot of time to compose their shots, so it’s inspiring when they have something really interesting. The locations also offered a new perspective on a group of people she has already spent so much time looking at. “The subjects are in public, so the photos aren’t exactly voyeuristic. But the moments are not staged and therefore, they are rather personal.
After a while the bulletin board overflowed with files and Peckman was left with a collection of its own. She considered hosting a gallery exhibition, but instead decided to feature her favorites in a book, Come fly with me: fly in style, that Rizzoli will release later this month.
Images are presented with minimal information, just names, dates and locations, to keep readers’ attention on the composition. We asked Peckman to show us some shots and describe what caught his eye.
Paul and Linda McCartney, LGW, 1971
“It was the first photo I ever pulled. It was the one that started my fascination with these images. It fits all categories. It’s a great photo, really well composed, really graphic and interesting to look at. watch. If you’re curious about fashion, this is kind of the epitome of what was going on in the seventies, even with what little girls wore. “
Mick Jagger and Marianne Faithfull, LCY 1969
“I love the clothes in this photo, especially his plaid suit, raincoat and hat. I also love that they are in this really normal setting. Jagger was, and is, so famous – it’s nice to see him in that context. “
Joan Collins, LHR 1989
“Look at this Louis Vuitton suitcase set! I mean, it just stopped me in my tracks. The entire photo is a stack of luggage that’s bigger than her. I love the look on her face and the doorman who orchestrates it. His initials are, of course, on all the bags. “
Muhammad Ali, LHR 1967
“It’s a perfect shot for me. One thing that’s really wonderful and unusual is that there’s no one else in the picture. Then there’s the outfit: a perfect white suit, a black striped tie, black shoes and a black briefcase. And the pose: he’s caught halfway and he’s looking straight at the camera. It’s really immediate – a world famous athlete but in a situation of all days. “
Rihanna, Lax 2015
“This one’s all about the shape that this coat makes. Looks like it’s a satin bomber or a baseball jacket. When you first look at it, you don’t really know what it is. . At second glance, you see someone hiding. That airport vibe in the background, and she’s holding her little makeup bag or jewelry box, whatever it is. The picture really has a lot of flow and of energy. “
Justin Bieber, LAX, 2015
“Current images are harder to find because celebrities don’t go through public airports as much. I found it interesting that you can still see people like him in a public space. And I loved how it really represents that time, with the trucker hat and the headphones and the sweatpants. An overview of what is happening then in fashion. “
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