ART IN ADVERTISING Guy Bourdin, 1970’s Fashion Photographer

Guy Bourdin fashion photography Charles Jourdan ad blue shoes table

In those rare moments of downtime, I do love getting caught up in one of my fave magazines, PORTER. Without a doubt I find new-to-me forward-thinkers, visionaries, inspirations. The most recent Winter Escape 2014 issue features the provocative work of 1970’s fashion photographer Guy Bourdin (1928-1991), and it fired me up! Inspired by Surrealism and photographer Man Ray, Bourdin really shines in his commercial work, taking his creativity to the masses, his ability to highlight product in an artistic light. Bourdin’s creations for French Vogue, Charles Jourdan, Pentax and Roland Pierre in the 1970’s are so innovative, you would not guess they were product placements at first glance.


Guy Bourdin fashion photography blue pool

Guy Bourdin fashion photography Charles Jourdan ad 1979 orange red black fishnets

Guy Bourdin fashion photography Vogue Paris 1977 green orange

Guy Bourdin fashion photography girls smoking

Guy Bourdin fashion photography legs hosiery shoes



Guy Bourdin fashion photography 1976 swimsuits sandals furs

Guy Bourdin fashion photography Pentax Calendar 1980 pink bed

Guy Bourdin fashion photography John Travolta

Bourdin’s impact on contemporary commercial photography lies in his passion for staging a narrative around the product that draws the viewer/buyer in…trepidatiously…making it that much more alluring and ultimately (the goal), memorable.


All images by Guy Bourdin


Erika Brechtel

Erika Brechtel

Creative Director

Desiring an online space to explore well-rounded, inspired content in all topics she loves most, Erika created 'The E List' (formerly the Small Shop blog) in 2010. When not enjoying an “occasional" glass of wine and wanderlusting for even warmer climates, Erika can be found sharing laughs with friends and family, and trying her very best to keep up with her 6-year old daughter (yet failing miserably).