Before the Sartorialist and Garance Doré made a love nest on the Internet (and then a love nest in the Village), legendary New York Times street-style photographer Bill Cunningham had been shooting people wearing their clothes on the streets for ages. The Sartorialist, Scott Schuman, speaks in glittering abstractions about his work: "The way I do it is just the way I do it." He has even admitted, "The abstract idea is much more important than trying to report what people are wearing." Whereas the 82-year-old Cunningham's trend-spotting column is a report, and something he can explain.
"See I don’t decide anything. I let the street speak to me. And in order for the street to speak to you, you’ve got to stay out there and see what it is! You don’t just manufacture in your head that skirts at the knee are the thing, and you go out and photograph people with skirts at the knee. You’ve got to stay on the street and let the street tell YOU what it is. There’s no shortcuts, believe me."
This is from the documentary about Cunningham opening today at the Film Forum, where it's slated to run for two weeks. See a clip at the Moment.