Monday Photography Inspiration – Julius Schulman

Julius Shulman was born in Brooklyn in 1910, and his interest in photography started after taking on the subject in high school. He later attended the Univertsin of Berkeley where he earned pocket money by selling his photographs to fellow students.

In 1936 he returned to Los Angeles and was enlisted by a friend to take photographs of a new, Neutra-designed house in Hollywood with his amateur Kodak Vest Pocket camera. When Neutra saw the pictures, he asked to meet the photographer and proceeded to give him his first assignments.

One of his assignments included photographing a building by Raphael Soriano, who would later be the architect of Mr. Shulman’s house and studio.

Thought his career, Julius Schulman was a commercial architectural photographer specialising in Modernist buildings. His career spanned over more than half a century working mostly in California.

His work are known for their clarity which many consider as an art form to this day. Each of his images unite perception and understanding of the buildings and their place place in the environment they are.

The precision of his compositions reveal not just the architectural ideas behind the surface but also the visions and hopes of an entire age.

The presence of a people are often seen and always felt whether there’s a presence or not.

He photographed some of the works of the best-known architects of his time such as Richard Neutra, Frank Lloyd-Wright, Charles and Ray Eames, Mies van der Rohe and Oscar Niemeyer.

Schulman’s reputation lies in part of his photographs of what are known as Case Study houses. The Case Study House Program enlisted eight architects, such as Neutra, Eero Saarinen and Eames, to design prototypes of homes that would meet the needs of America’s post war housing boom. 26 of the houses were built with Julius Schulman photographing 18 of them.

Unfortunately, many of the buildings photographed by Shulman have now been demolished or re-purposed, lending to the popularity of his images.

Please find below a video by Ted Forbes reviewing a few of Julius Schulman images.

A wonderful start to the week everyone!!!


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