A Glimpse of Street Photographer Garry Winogrand at Work

This video was shot by a German film crew in the early 1980s, and shows American street photographer Garry Winogrand at work. Although he died of bladder cancer at age 56, his photographic output during his lifetime was enormous, even compared to other photographers:

Consider this: at his death, Winogrand left behind 2500 undeveloped rolls of 36-exposure 35mm film (mostly Tri-X), 6,500 rolls of film that had been developed but not contact-printed–not to mention 300 apparently untouched, unedited 35mm contact sheets.

Do the math. Conservatively, that’s at least 300,000 pictures – equal to at least two life’s work for anyone else–that Winogrand took but never even saw, so busy he already had been photographing the world around him. [#]

That explains why Winogrand is able to load new film into his Leica so effortlessly while talking to the camera — he could probably do it in his sleep.

(via tokyo camera style)

  • Tony Wisneske

    “It’s the closest I get to not existing.” I totally know what he means.

  • Frankpowell

    Modern day “Wee Gee”

  • Seoras

    “It’s the closest I get to not existing.”

    This bares out my theory that the ‘high’ that Winogrand got out of photographing was the fraction of a second suspension from reality. Like a drug but one in which we benefit.

  • Jann

    He’s an inspiration. Thanks so much for posting the video. It makes me want to run off to Venice Beach with my camera.

  • David Ritchie

    Do we really need two voice dialects in one video? Makes it so hard to follow one when the other is talking over all the time…

    Just make two videos? 

  • Nn-r

    I love the way he handels his camera when trying to take a photo. He fumbles, holds it up and down, observes the scene, when caught by his subjecst he fumbles again, as if he was a little helpless or clueless. It’s great to see him work.

  • 9inchnail


    Are you dense? This obviously is a GERMAN documentary, as stated in the text, it was shot in the 80s. How would you remove the voice-over in 30-year-old footage, genius?