Magnum luminary Bruce Davidson is renowned for the unflinching intimacy of his images of alienated communities – here he lifts the lid on his upfront approach:
Robert Capa said, "If you're not getting good pictures it's because you're not getting close enough." Bruce Davidson is one of the forerunners of a movement in radical documentary photography along side Diane Arbus, Danny Lyon and Lee Friedlander. He shares "I always feel like I need to be taken into a world," by entering environments and social groups that he knows little of. He has an outsider's viewpoint--peering in and "taking" pictures unapologetically. The closeness of Davidson to his subjects and their lives is precisely what launched the imagery into the limelight with enormous appreciation.
What advice does Bruce have to share with young photographers? Stay longer, revisit your subjects, wait. “I think what I see with younger photographers is they don’t stay around long enough. They photograph, let’s say, someone selling hotdogs on the street, (but) they should do more than just take one picture; they should come back, day after day, maybe even year after year to photograph the entire family that has its business (there)"
Bruce has many pointers on spontaneity, deciding between color, black and white or digital imagery, capturing the mood, taking risks and last but not least: grow a thick skin.
Read the entire thought-provoking article with Bruce on dazeddigital.com