About This Image
With photographer's early Denman Street red stamp on verso of print. A version of "Storm".
Walter Bird was born in 1903. Walter Bird’s portraiture, particularly of men was, in its time, regarded as second only to the great Karsh of Ottawa. One of the ‘giants’ of the London scene in the 1930’s, his impeccable taste ensured that his figure studies were unsurpassed, but postwar, his work was an inspiration to the many young photographers who followed in his wake.
In his time, Walter Bird was one of the country’s most distinguished photographers of important people. A shy and reticent man to the unacquainted; for those who knew him, his sparkling wit matched his subtle photographic style and uncomplicated lighting technique.
Bird was originally destined by his family to be an engineer. Instead, he completed his education by studying at the Richmond Art School and later in Paris.
By using photography as a visual notebook for his early study of ‘life class’ nudes Bird unwittingly established the starting point for his romantic visualization of the female form.
In the early years of his career Bird worked mostly on advertising commissions, nudes and portraits of actors, published in magazines such as Tatler and Theatre World. He published several books on photography including Eves without Leaves (1940), which proved popular with British troops during the Second World War.
On the death of Walter Stoneman in 1958 Bird took over his position as chief photographer for J. Russell & Sons, purchasing the business in 1961. Bird superseded Stoneman as the official photographer for the National Photographic Record, initiated by the National Portrait Gallery in 1917 to record important and influential citizens.
He died in 1969.
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Medium Silver print
Mount on original mount
Photo Date 1938 Print Date 1938
Dimensions 10-5/8 x 7-1/2 in. (270 x 191 mm)
Photo Country United Kingdom (UK)
Photographer Country United Kingdom (UK)