Of the first three photographers, I highlighted two I meet and worked with, Ernst Hass and Dan Budnik at Frenchy’s Color Lab in NYC. Frenchy’s and there was a Frenchy who was one of those bigger than life characters he came to New York from France around 1947-48 and started working in the New York as a motorcycle messenger. In 1969 Frenchy opened Frenchy’s Color Lab and it quickly became one of the top two Dye Transfer printing houses in the world.
I graduated from the Germain School of Photography in the spring of 1971 and started working as a studio freelance assistant photographer doing lighting set-ups, loading film, developing film sometimes, printing and whatever else needed to be done in the course of a day that started before 8AM and usually ending late at night for about $20.00 a day. I loved it, and never thought of it has work.
One of the photographers I encountered (1971) was Art Kane someone whose work I admired. That same year 1971 late summer I got a job at Frenchy’s, because the guy in front of me wanted $105 and I accepted $100 per week. It was a life changing and over time will expand. Around 1977 Art Kane walked in, he knew Frenchy and was now looking to get back in the business and get his career on track again. Over the next five years, I would see Art Kane, and we have lunch, and dinners while working together.
Art Kane was originally going to be the first photographer for these weekend blogs but as I read up on him I realized how personal it was to me knowing him as I did. When rereading his New York Times obituary stopped me cold again the same way it did in 1995.