Before there was The Sartorialist or Tommy Ton, there was Bill Cunningham. Cunningham is a legendary street style photographer that is still going strong at the New York Times and even Anna Wintour hopes to be snapped by him!
Cunningham’s career started in the 1970s when he started taking photographs of fashion on the streets of New York. As a result of a chance photograph of Greta Garbo, he published a group of his impromptu pictures in the New York Times in December 1978, which soon became a regular series.
Cunningham scours the streets on his bike everyday looking for rare birds of fashion and has become a respected icon. If Cunningham snaps a photo of you, it’s a huge honor, because you’ve just become part of a visual history.
“We’re in the age of the cookie-cutter sameness. There are few that are rarities, someone who doesn’t look like 10 million others.”—Bill Cunningham.
Before Bill Cunningham was snapping photos of street fashion heros, he was making fabulous hats under the label William J. The hats are amazing and definitely pieces of fashion history.
Want to learn more about Bill Cunningham? Check out his weekly snapshots here, and if you haven’t checked out the documentary Bill Cunningham New York, do yourself a big favor and go see it!