Ellen von Unwerth
[Photographer, b. 1954, Frankfurt, Germany, lives in New York.]
I like to photograph anyone before they know what their best angles are.
I don’t stand behind the camera drooling. Knowing that, the models are more likely to open up and relax.
I’m into capturing the moment. Sometimes, I’ll rip the camera out of my assistant’s hands and he’ll be shouting, “But there’s no film in the camera!” and I think, “Never mind! Let’s go.”
I think that the obsession with technique is a male thing. Boy’s toys. They love playing... I would rather search for a new model or location.
I love all the old pictures—of spanking and Bettie Page and corsets. But you can’t do spanking in fashion, so I wanted to do a project where I could really let go and get girls who also love those things.
A sexy picture can come from anyone who forms an intimacy with their subject. You can take a sexy picture of your cat if you want to.