Annie Leibovitz Interview, This Time In Seattle

Love her or don’t, but she’s been a formidable photographer for decades. And this week, Annie was in Seattle pushing her new book “Annie Leibovitz at Work”.

You may have caught her more polished interview on NPR earlier in the week, but local NPR host Steve Scher managed a longer and more gritty interview with her after her talk here Wednesday at Benaroya Hall.

Almost without regard to the content, I’m usually more interested in the less polished versions of someone of Annie’s stature. Give it a listen. There are some nuggets on both sides of the fence. Streaming links here:

[approx 53 min.]

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Adam says:

Thanks for the post Chase, I’ll make sure I get my mitts on a copy of that book. I really love her work and found her totally charming in the interview. I love that she rambles and stammers and searches for the right words to describe her art and business. I do the same thing and really, if you could explain your art perfectly, wouldn’t you be a story teller and not a photographer. I love her examples like the Dorothy Lang depression classic image, that she drove past then drove back to explore and capture that iconic image. I love her comments on digital, photographing the queen, Rolling Stone, Vogue, Bush etc.

Mitch Weiss says:

Annie also came to Harvard this week to speak about the book.

I was able to sneak 30 seconds of chat time with her. She is also a left eyed shooter ;)

I captured a photo of her @ 135mm @ f2 while she was signing books.

I posted it on my site if anyone would like a peak…

Anonymous says:

Yowsers, that was painful to listen to – she sounds really uncomfortable, too much rambling.

Anonymous says:

I am halfway through the book. I wish there was more depth and meat to the comments.

The story behind the Stones tour in the mid-seventies makes the book all the more interesting to me. I met her while she was shooting the tour.

The book is good. Not great. But a worthwhile read.

I love some of her works…
maybe a few weeks ago i heard she had just opened an exhibition in London’s National Portrait Gallery so i bought a low cost flight ticket for January 18…
london baby here i come ;P

Oscar says:

oh. Good timing.
I watched the documentary “life through a lens” done by her sister and published by the PBS a couple of days ago.
This one should be interesting.

Thanks for the link :)

Rob Jaudon says:

That ROCKS Chase. Thanks a bunch!!!


Anonymous says:

I’ve seen the book. It’s nicely done.

Ogalthorpe says:

I like Annie. I think she’s a good sport.

James says:

Thanks for sharing.

Mat Hayward says:

I was happy to have an opportunity to meet her after the show at Benaroya this week for a quick photo. It was funny because my friend wasn’t used to my camera so he goofed the shot and we went back up to her where he had to confess to her about blowing it. She gladly posed again then grabbed my camera and chimped it to make sure we got it right this time :) I found her to be very charming and nice which was contrary to what I had expected in all honesty.

I did get the impression she isn’t thrilled about being the person in the limelight rather than covering the person in the limelight but she seems to handle it pretty well.

I think for the most part her photographs are gorgeous. Her massive success I attribute to being in the right place at the right time however. Her story gives me hope as you never know when opportunity is going to come knocking.

Jonny says:

Interesting interview. In the end, she really does just sound like anyone else, albeit she’s lived a dramatically different life than most.

The more I listen, the more it confirms that it’s her personal skills that have made her who she is, not her technical skill.

Kind of a follow up to your previous blog, the most under-reported aspect of photography is straight up people skills, and the timeless role these skills play. In my mind, personal skills… that is to develop a quick personal connection with the subject… are far more important than any technical skills.

Definitely not something i’ve mastered by any stretch, but something i can continue to develop in my own work, and encourage others to pursue.

Anne says:

Thank you so much for sharing this. It’s a compelling look into the mind of a documentarian.

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Aaron says:

Picked up the book a couple of days ago. I’ve only read the introduction to this point. Should be interesting to read about some of her shoots.

I’ll be sure to listen to this interview as well. Thanks for the heads up.

Anonymous says:

I listened to the other interview on NPR earlier this weekend. Considerably different than this one. This here Annie sounds much more erratic and disheveled. Which is the real Annie? I bet you she’s just like us, a good bit of both.

It’s an interesting listen (still going as I’m writing…). Thanks for sharing.

Did you catch the show Chase?

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