Posted by Petra Zlatevska on August 17, 2010
A Nevada boy at heart, photographer Just Loomis´career has taken him to New York, via Milan. In between photographing shoots for Harpers Bazaar and snapping various music icons, including Madonna in the early 80s, he met the man who would take him on as an assistant and, in the process, became a life-long friend: Helmut Newton. Spanning more than thirty years, Just´s body of work- ethereal portraits of characters that embody the hopes and broken dreams of the American way of life - are now published for the first time in As We Are by Hatje Cantz. In an Australian exclusive, we talked to Just about what inspires him and his work as he shares some of his personal archive with us. Check out the gallery Just hand-picked exclusively for Kluster.
Covered: Working with Helmet Newton, understanding American history and observations of Australia.
Petra Zlatevska: As We Are documents more than just 30 years of your career accomplishments – a career producing images that reflect the Zeitgeist of American society. June Newton was quoted as saying, “No one is doing Americana like Just”. Do you consider yourself a photographer naturally drawn to capturing American subjects and themes or an American photographer simply photographing images and people?
Just Loomis: That´s a great question, I think the latter. I lived in Europe for four years (during the 80s). Since moving back to the US from Europe, I came back and took a lot of photographs of where I live. So obviously those are American photographs. However, I don’t consciously set out to do an ‘American photograph’ - I don’t do that. I am simply drawn to things that I see and that I connect with. I recently took a to Paris and other parts of Europe and I realized that despite the years I lived in Europe and this recent trip, I don’t know a lot about living there or about European culture; it is a culture that truly isn’t mine. I have a greater understanding of American history, American people and children, how children grow up and the things that they go through. I feel I understand this better than what European adults or children experience. We have a different set of issues we deal with here in America and I am very in tune with that.More...