David Bailey

“You treat each person as an individual…You adapt to who you’re photographing. It’s their personality, not mine I want.” – David Bailey


David Bailey was born on 2 January 1938 in North Leyton, East London. He left school at fifteen and was conscripted to the Royal Air Force in 1956. Whilst posted in Singapore he bought his first camera. Bailey started working with fashion photographer, John French as his assistant in 1959. He left soon after to strike out his own career as a photographer. Discarding the rigid rules of a previous generation of portrait and fashion photographers, he channelled the energy of London’s newly informal street culture into his work. In the early 60s he began to direct the first of hundreds of commercials, and has been recognized internationally for his skills as a filmmaker Bailey has exhibited worldwide and has produced some of the most famous photographic portraits of the last six decades. He has travelled extensively, and although best known for his fashion and portraiture, his interests are varied, extending beyond photography to TV commercials, film, painting and sculpture.




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