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Who IS Ron Galella ? The man behind the camera

21 January, 2015 / Jules Reid / COMMENTS (0)

Finally.......a word from Jules       our BLOG is back, 


A series of shots, just like Mr. Galella is known for...... 

Ron Galella was always the man behind the camera, capturing photos that we all recognize. He created for many of us the image of celebrity America in the 1960 and 1970's. His work was revolutionary and iconic. He is certainly the most famous AND the most controversial photographer in the world.

Ron Galella single handedly created what we now know as the paparazzi. His bodies of work have been on display at many museums including The Museum of Modern Art in New York and The Tate Gallery in London.

The photographs he captured with his camera, live in the minds of many of us today; and yet, some of us do not even know him by name. Let alone by face.

Ron Galella in 1971

I was fortunate to be able to meet this aging artist in Manhattan last week. He was in town promoting his newest book,The Stories Behind the Pictures: A Guide to the Paparazzi Approach . Many of his black and white images were on display at the ever chic Clic Gallery located in Nolita. It is one of his more notable coffee table books that I was in search of. Jackie, My Obsession was published by Galella in 2012. 

This huge hardcover book of incredible photography spans 12 years of Jackie Kennedy Onassis' lifetime. 


Galella devoted his life and career to photography. It was October 7, 1961 when he captured the most famous shot of his career~ "Windblown Jackie" walking across the street in New York City.


I sat down with Mr. Galella to hear his story. He told me of crouching down in a taxi cab with his camera lens up against the window and asking the taxi driver to honk the horn just as Jackie was crossing the street. One second in time, and he captured an everlasting image.

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis was NOT a fan of Ron Galella. She felt  she was not a celebrity but just a normal mother and woman whom should have her privacy.  Two separate lawsuits were filed by Jackie O, and Galella was forced to remain at least 50 yards from Jackie and at least 30 yards away from her children. Despite her dislike of him, he was so endeared towards Jackie that he destroyed any negative photo film that was unflattering to her. He presented her to the world in a gorgeous and dignified way. He called her " the most glamorous woman in the world."

As many American women would admit, I fell under the Jackie O spell at first glance as well. Her mystique attracted our curiosity. Her large wide-set eyes and slim figure made her a fashion icon the moment she walked into our lives as Mrs. John F Kennedy. Her style leads me daily to design ideas and aspirations I will never certainly never achieve. 

And those sunglasses?


She hid behind those big black sunglasses and rarely gave interviews. She was admired and emulated like no other woman in history.

Whenever I put on various pairs of my big sunglasses, I am reminded of Jackie and her unmatchable style. Ron Galella was fortunate to photograph many celebrities including Elvis, Andy Warhol, Marlon Brando... to name a few. But it is Jackie to whom he remained obsessed ;and thus, created a photographic history that is unparalleled. 


Photography is the only way to capture a moment... a feeling.

One look at a photo brings memories flooding into your mind. And for that, I am a most devoted fan.

Bye for now,