Eric White, born and raised in rural upstate New York to Armenian (mother) /French (father) parents. I grew
up thinking I had the “average American experience” when in reality, was more like a prequel to “My Big Fat
Greek Wedding”. My family is big, loud, numerous, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I was challenged as a
kid to create my own fun, as in a rural setting, there aren’t “big city distractions” to occupy yourself with. I was
just as happy to wander into the acres of woods behind my house and quietly observe the world I was
When my grandmother bought me a camera at 9 years old, that changed everything. Suddenly, I had a way to
bring home the flowers and bugs and tree canopies through my lens. I collected a menagerie of treasures shot by
shot and could begin to form a visual vocabulary with light and form that I attribute much of my success to this
day. I wish i still had that cheap plastic camera, there was something so magic about its lo-fi simplicity.
Black and white versus color photographs, can you identify with either or and when do you make a decision of choosing one or the other in a final product.
I truly believe that is something that can only be determined by a gut instinct. I guess my school of thought is to look at what strikes me
first – is it the tones and color harmony, or how the light is striking the subject? It’s definitely not something I decided when I’m
Photographer you admire
I really admire the work of David Armstrong and Tim Walker.
I think there is a sensitivity and sensuality in the way he shoots.
Femininity and elegance shouldn’t be saved only for women.
Its more about the ability to evoke emotion and venerability that makes
their work come alive. I’m also a huge Richard Avedon and Helmut Newton fan.
Theres always just an undeniable elegance in their
work. As for new school talent, I think Jeff Hahn and Balint Barna are doing incredible things.
Who will like to photograph and in what setting?
Tilda Swinton at the mouth of a volcano wearing 2009 Mc’Queen. Duh.
Photographer or camera
Photographer using the camera that sees the world the same way their own eyes do.
What’s fashion for you and what designers have who has what it takes?
Fashion is nothing more than our visual name tag. Its our first impression and often the most lasting of the
people we pass every day. Not that what you wear is who you are, but to me, it’s our way of saying “I know who I
am” to the world. I was at a wedding this past weekend and my grandmother was wearing this lux coral silk
jacket and and dress. She looked incredible and everybody notices confidence. THAT was fashion. It isn’t about
15 year old girls in high waisted cigarette pants and a sheer blouse with diamonds dripping off their neck, and
LaMer melting off their faces. Its about looking like yourself and feeling great.
As for designers, I tend toward the certain favorites like Siki Im, Robert Geller, Alexander McQueen,
Phillip Lim, Christopher Kane, Fendi, Jil Sander, Prabal Gurung, Prada, Proenza Schouler, Rick
Owens, Rodarte, Vivienne Westwood, Yohji Yamamoto, Sally LaPointe, Maison Martin
Margiela, J.W. Anderson, Haider Ackermann, Gareth Pugh, Damir Doma, Chloe, Chalayan,
Celine, Balenciaga, Raf Simons, Ann Demeulemeester. They all make clothes that are interesting to
photograph, and from my perspective, that’s an amazing way to gain inspiration.
Sheer black chiffon oversized anything. Also, whenever designers can have a sense of humor without sacrificing sophistication.
Lily Gatins wearing Andre Landeros Michel , photograph by Eric White .
For me, Brooklyn is home. Its no secret that it’s an artist community, but I think more importantly its my
generation’s way to redefine what a New Yorker is. If you asked the New York Times, you’ll read about the
“artisanal dining”, and “fabulous ‘artsy’ (I fucking hate that word) vintage boutiques!” Yes they do exist, but
what you don’t hear about is the collaboration between people who have a lot of creativity to share and push
boundaries. We share rooms with people who might need it because we recognize that big dreams don’t always
come with big bank accounts. It’s that fostering of inspiration that is so “Brooklyn” to me. We care about each
other and that’s the new New York.
Men of Milano by Eric White
What is your involvement with music? Do you like having music playing in your sets while photographing?
I always try to have something playing while I shoot. I’m lucky to be dating an amazing man who started his
own Music PR Company Ilium Media, so I have been fortunate to have his work to expose me to new artists and
genres. I actually started a blog of my own curation to keep track of some of my favorites so I can throw it on
when I’m on set. check it out! http://nicecleanwhitenoise.tumblr.com/
I was Just in Milan for Men’s Fashion Week, Its a really vibrant place. I hadn’t traveled to Europe before and
the electric creativity and appreciation of artists was overwhelming. I was so inspired. The history and
architecture combined with a keen know how of dressing casually was what set that city apart from anywhere
i’ve ever been. The idea of collaboration and support really contrasted New York. Sometimes its sad to me how
closed NY is. “Dog-eat-dog” is one thing, but it has come to a point where sometimes it feels as though in order
to make it in NY one must be born into it. Milano is rich with opportunity and I cant wait to return! Keep an eye
out for my next batch of work from Milano!
Eric White during Milan Mens Fashion Week 2014
A lady never tells. Why don’t we go out, and I’ll show you instead?
Where are you free and at peace?
Playing piano in an empty house. There is nothing like it in the world.
All photographs by Eric White