104 Facts About Edward Weston


Edward Henry Weston was a 20th-century American photographer.


Edward Weston was born in Chicago and moved to California when he was 21.


Edward Weston knew he wanted to be a photographer from an early age, and initially his work was typical of the soft focus pictorialism that was popular at the time.


Edward Weston spent the remaining ten years of his life overseeing the printing of more than 1,000 of his most famous images.


Edward Weston was nine years older than he, and they developed a very close bond that was one of the few steady relationships in Weston's life.


Edward Weston's father remarried when he was nine, but neither Weston nor his sister got along with their new stepmother and stepbrother.


Edward Weston was left on his own much of the time; he stopped going to school and withdrew into his own room in their large home.


Edward Weston began photographing in Chicago parks and a farm owned by his aunt, and developed his own film and prints.


Edward Weston earned a living by taking a job at a local department store, but he continued to spend most of his free time taking photos, Within two years he felt confident enough of his photography that he submitted his work to the magazine Camera and Darkroom, and in the April 1906 issue they published a full-page reproduction of his picture Spring, Chicago.


In September 1904, Edward Weston took part in the men's double American round archery event at the 1904 Summer Olympics with his father taking part in the same event.


At his sister's urging Edward Weston left Chicago in the spring of 1906 and moved near May's home in Tropico, California.


Edward Weston decided to stay there and pursue a career in photography, but he soon realized he needed more professional training.


The school refused to give him a diploma unless he paid for the full nine months; Edward Weston refused and instead moved back to California in the spring of 1908.


Edward Weston briefly worked at the photography studio of George Steckel in Los Angeles, as a negative retoucher.


Edward Weston was a graduate of the Normal School, later to become UCLA.


Edward Weston assumed the position of a grade-school teacher in Tropico.


Edward Weston was seven years older than Weston and a distant relative of Harry Chandler, who at that time was described as the head of "the single most powerful family in Southern California".


The first of their four sons, Edward Chandler Weston, known as Chandler, was born on April 26,1910.


Edward Weston clearly learned much by being an assistant to his father in the bungalow studio.


Edward Weston gave up any aspirations in pursuing photography as a career after his adventures in Mexico.


In 1910 Edward Weston opened his own business, called "The Little Studio", in Tropico.


Edward Weston won prizes in national competitions, published several more photographs and wrote articles for magazines such as Photo-Era and American Photography, championing the pictorial style.


Edward Weston became a long-time artistic collaborator with his father and an important photographer on his own.


Edward Weston was a quiet Midwestern transplant to California, and Mather was a part of the growing bohemian cultural scene in Los Angeles.


Edward Weston asked Mather to be his studio assistant, and for the next decade they worked closely together, making individual and jointly signed portraits of writers Carl Sandburg and Max Eastman.


Edward Weston followed in the footsteps of his father and became a well-known photographer.


Edward Weston followed these with several more photographs of nude models, the first of dozens of figure studies he would make of friends and lovers over the next twenty years.


Until now Edward Weston had kept his relationships with other women a secret from his wife, but as he began to photograph more nudes Flora became suspicious about what went on with him and his models.


Edward Weston became his primary model for the next several years.


Edward Weston badly wanted to go to New York to meet with him, but he did not have enough money to make the trip.


Edward Weston wanted to spend a couple of months there photographing and promoting his work, and, conveniently, he could travel under the pretense of Modotti being his assistant and translator.


The week before he left for Mexico, Edward Weston briefly reunited with Mather and took several nudes of her lying in the sand at Redondo Beach.


The different culture and scenery in Mexico forced Edward Weston to look at things in new ways.


Edward Weston became more responsive to what was in front of him, and he turned his camera on everyday objects like toys, doorways and bathroom fixtures.


Edward Weston made several intimate nudes and portraits of Modotti.


Edward Weston continued to photograph the people and things around him, and his reputation in Mexico increased the longer he stayed.


Edward Weston had a second exhibition at the Aztec Land Gallery in 1924, and he had a steady stream of local socialites asking him to take their portraits.


Edward Weston had recently corresponded with a woman he had known for several years named Miriam Lerner, and as her letters became more passionate he longed to see her again.


Edward Weston seemed to be struggling with his past and his future during this period.


Edward Weston burned all of his pre-Mexico journals, as though trying to erase the past, and started a new series of nudes with Lerner and with his son Neil.


Edward Weston received new critical acclaim and six of his prints were purchased for the State Museum.


In May 1926 Edward Weston signed a contract with writer Anita Brenner for $1,000 to make photographs for a book she was writing about Mexican folk art.


Edward Weston initially returned to his old studio in Glendale.


Edward Weston hastily arranged a dual exhibition at University of California of the photographs that he and Brett had made the year before.


Edward Weston asked to look at her work and was intrigued by her large paintings of sea shells.


Edward Weston borrowed several shells from her, thinking he might find some inspiration for a new still life series.


Edward Weston found the stark rock forms and empty spaces to be a visual revelation, and over a long weekend he took twenty-seven photographs.


Edward Weston made portraits to earn an income, but he longed to get away by himself and get back to his art.


Edward Weston started making regular trips to nearby Point Lobos, where he would continue to photograph until the end of his career.


Edward Weston arranged his compositions so that things happened on the edges; lines almost cross or meet and circular lines just touch the edges tangentially; his compositions were now created exclusively for a space with the proportions of eight by ten.


In early April 1929, Edward Weston met photographer Sonya Noskowiak at a party, and by the end of the month she was living with him.


Edward Weston made a variety of photographs of cabbage, kale, onions, bananas, and finally, his most iconic image, peppers.


However, the Wall Street crash of 1929 had wiped out most of her savings, and Edward Weston felt increased pressure to help provide more for her and his sons.


Edward Weston began taking close-up nudes of Noskowiak and other models.


Edward Weston was still living with Noskowiak at that time, but within two weeks he asked her to move out, declaring that for him other women were "as inevitable as the tides".


Edward Weston closed his studio in Carmel and moved to Santa Monica Canyon, California, where he opened a new studio with Brett.


Edward Weston implored Wilson to come and live with him, and in August 1935 she finally agreed.


Edward Weston exhibited only one or two of this series in his lifetime, thinking several of the others were "too erotic" for the general public.


At the suggestion of Beaumont Newhall, Edward Weston decided to apply for a Guggenheim Foundation grant.


Edward Weston wrote a two-sentence description about his work, assembled thirty-five of his favorite prints, and sent it in.


Edward Weston did not mention that Wilson had written the new application for him.


On March 22,1937, Edward Weston received notification that he had been awarded a Guggenheim grant, the first ever given to a photographer.


Edward Weston commissioned Neil to build a small home in the Carmel Highlands on property owned by Wilson's father.


In 1939, Seeing California with Edward Weston was published, with photographs by Weston and writing by Wilson.


Just as the Guggenheim money was running out, Edward Weston was invited to illustrate a new edition of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass.


Edward Weston would receive $1,000 for photographs and $500 travel expenses.


Edward Weston insisted on having artistic control of the images he would take and insisted that he would not be taking literal illustrations of Whitman's text.


Edward Weston was near the end of the Whitman trip, and he was deeply affected by the outbreak of the war.


Edward Weston spent the first few months of 1942 organizing and printing the negatives from the Whitman trip.


Edward Weston continued to work on images centered on Wildcat Hill, including shots of the many cats that lived there.


Edward Weston treated them with the same serious intent that he applied to all of his other subjects, and Charis assembled the results into their most unusual publication, The Cats of Wildcat Hill, which was finally published in 1947.


Edward Weston withdrew from Wilson, who at the same time began to become more involved in local politics and the Carmel cultural scene.


Edward Weston returned to Glendale since the land for their cabin at Wildcat Hill still belonged to Wilson's father.


Edward Weston had never worked in color before, primarily because he had no means of developing or printing the more complicated color process.


Edward Weston accepted their offer in no small part because they offered him $250 per image, the highest amount he would be paid for any single work in his lifetime.


Edward Weston eventually sold seven color works to Kodak of landscapes and scenery at Point Lobos and nearby Monterey harbor.


In 1947 as his Parkinson's disease progressed, Edward Weston began looking for an assistant.


Serendipitously, an eager young photographic enthusiast, Dody Edward Weston Thompson, contacted him in search of employment.


Edward Weston mentioned he had just that morning written a letter to Ansel Adams, looking for someone seeking to learn photography in exchange for carrying his bulky large-format camera and to provide a much needed automobile.


Edward Weston's final negative was an image he called Rocks and Pebbles, 1948.


Edward Weston worked with his sons and Dody to catalog his images and especially to oversee the publication and printing of his work.


Later that same year the Smithsonian Institution displayed nearly 100 of these prints at a major exhibit, "The World of Edward Weston", paying tribute to his accomplishments in American photography.


Edward Weston died at his home on Wildcat Hill on New Year's Day, 1958.


Edward Weston's sons scattered his ashes into the Pacific Ocean at an area then known as Pebbly Beach on Point Lobos.


Edward Weston had $300 in his bank account at the time of his death.


Edward Weston continued to use the Seneca view camera for all other work.


Edward Weston continued to use this equipment throughout his life.


Edward Weston preferred these cameras when taking portraits because he could respond more quickly to the sitter.


Edward Weston reported that with his Graflex he once made three dozen negatives of Tina Modotti within 20 minutes.


In 1946 a representative from Kodak asked Edward Weston to try out their new Kodachrome film, and over the next two years he made at least 60 8 x 10 color images using this film.


Edward Weston is "feeling the light" and checking his own observations.


Edward Weston always made contact prints, meaning that the print was exactly the same size as the negative.


Edward Weston did not have an artificial ultra-violet light source, so he had to place the contact print directly in sunlight to expose it.


In 1924 Edward Weston wrote this about his darkroom process, "I have returned, after several years use of Metol-Hydroquinine open-tank" developer to a three-solution Pyro developer, and I develop one at a time in a tray instead of a dozen in a tank.


Edward Weston continued to use this technique for the rest of his life.


Edward Weston was known to extensively use dodging and burning to achieve the look he wanted in his prints.


Early in his career Edward Weston printed on several kinds of paper, including Velox, Apex, Convira, Defender Velour Black and Haloid.


Edward Weston continued to use this paper almost exclusively until he stopped printing.


Edward Weston's Daybooks were published in two volumes totaling more than 500 pages in the first edition.


Edward Weston wrote dozens of articles and commentaries, beginning in 1906 and ending in 1957.


Edward Weston hand-wrote or typed at least 5,000 letters to colleagues, friends, lovers, his wives and his children.


Edward Weston first spoke and wrote about the concept in 1922, at least a decade before Ansel Adams began utilizing the term, and he continued to expand upon this idea both in writing and in his teachings.


In 1984 Edward Weston was inducted into the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum.


The artistic career of Edward Weston spanned more than forty years, from roughly 1915 to 1956.