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Saul Leiter

Under the Influence of Saul Leiter


It’s not uncommon these days for street photographers to rally against the practice of over-sharing images on the internet and, to be more specific, social media and its subsequent groups. Granted, the practice has resulted in “photo pollution”, but it also has provided a most interesting point of study. I still have waves of images coming at me on a daily basis via various social media feeds. Some good, many average and some bad. But even though I’m terribly lazy in trimming the fat from my daily intake of photographs shared on social media, it is fascinating when I see the influence the greats of street photography have on photographers of today. The real kick is the “a-ha” moment when I dig into one of my subject’s catalog for the first time and it hits me on how I’ve seen their style replicated in my feeds. This backwards study of influence is not solely married to the internet age, but with the advent of social media, the ease of sharing and the rise of street photography’s popularity, a great photographer’s impact has never been clearer. And, in these eyes, I see the influence of Saul Leiter more and more with each passing day.

Featured Photo

Street Photo of the week by Saul Leiter

This week, we recognise Saul Leiter as the Master of Photography he surely is. Dying, alas, always brings images of the person to the fore and for most the homage bears upon a single image or series. For Saul Leiter this is impossible. Even though known for certain attributes such as; having a ‘painterly quality’ in his photographs which his contemporaries didn’t, or being able to use colour to push the emotional feeling in his images. He is known for colour rather than an image. Having looked through as much as we can find of his oeuvre we noticed Leiters work always appears to be peeking out or through, almost always another pane of glass between him and the happening he photographs,not just the lens.