Very sad news about Richard Bailey, who passed away yesterday at the age of 52 from cancer. By all accounts he was working right until the end. Bailey was one of the giants of Australian fashion photography, working with every major local magazine and retailer. Based in New York for 10 years, he also worked with GQ, Vanity Fair, Vogue Italia, Glamour, Grazia and Mademoiselle and his portfolio of advertising work spans The Gap, Victoria's Secret, Anne Klein, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale's, Macy's, Anne Taylor, Nautica, L'Oréal and Mercedes Benz. But Bailey's biggest showcase was by far Vogue Australia, with which he worked for 31 years. You only have to check his website, to see that the local edition accounts for over half the content of his magazine covers section.
It wasn't all safe, commercial work. Tsubi's controversial 2004 'Death Machine' calendar featured Bailey's colour-saturated images of semi-clad models, including Miranda Kerr and Michelle Leslie, posing provocatively against cars and motorbikes.
The previous year, for a book called 1/1, he shot a series of edgy, black and white images of Chic Management models, to prove the critics wrong that "There are no girls [read: decent models] in Australia".
Bailey of course lived to see Australian models take the world by storm. Many of them will be toasting him tonight.
He is survived by his wife Gillian and children Billie and Jasper.
all images/richard bailey.com.au