L.A. Private Schools Employ Celebrity Photographers for Yearbook Pics

Illustration for article titled L.A. Private Schools Employ Celebrity Photographers for Yearbook Pics

Some L.A. private schools are bringing in celebrity photographers for portrait day. Is this supposed to shock me? Color me not shocked.

As a graduate of two L.A. private schools that encouraged talking about feelings and celebrity endorsements in equal measure, I think it's cute that "Vince Bucci, who has taken wedding portraits for the likes of Kim Kardashian and Avril Lavigne, is gearing up for picture days at Wildwood School and Westside Neighborhood School," according to The Hollywood Reporter. "Meanwhile, New York-based Dennis Kleiman, whose subjects have included Denis Leary, The White Stripes and Ozzy Osbourne, founded Stomping Ground Photo with an aim to bring an editorial edge to those Sears-like picture packages. Hollywood Schoolhouse, Temple Israel of Hollywood and The Willows all hire him." UNIMPRESSED!

"Last year we had a parent apply to the school just based on the amazing photos in the yearbook," said Lisa Smith, photography teacher at Hollywood Schoolhouse. (Was the photo of a Harvard diploma?)


Look: the variety shows at my elementary school were dubbed. Like, we recorded at a studio first and then lip-synched to our own voices, because GOD FORBID any kid messed up and there was an agent in the audience. A-list celebrities directed and starred in our fundraising videos. Once Shaq came and filmed a commercial during P.E., for mysterious reasons I can't recall.

This was all in the '90s, too; schools today need to step their game up. Hire Judd Apatow to be the Yearbook's creative director. Hire paparazzi to come during recess so you can make tuition even more expensive and your wait list even more exclusive. Blue Ivy doesn't need your charity.

[The Hollywood Reporter]

Image via Dennis Kleinman.

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I was just talking about this—sort of—with a friend of mine. “Pro-pics” for life events seem to be (among the upper-middle class) de rigueur lately in a way that they hadn’t been in the past. (Back when you would maybe go to Sears and have some portraits done.) Having a photographer come to capture your kid’s first birthday back in 1985? Maybe if you were a Donald and Ivana Trump! But nowadays? The Perkins from Middlenowhere, Ohio wouldn’t dream of throwing a fête for little Blakely without hiring a photographer. Sweet 16s, quinceañeras, bar/bat mitzvahs, proms, engagements, showers, boudoir pics pre-wedding, baby etc: photogs for these occasions seem to be more and more prevalent.

Thoughts as to why?

My theory right now is that with the ubiquity of phones (every phone has one these days!), every little thing is captured, not just (as in the past) the big milestones. So pro pics are a way to distinguish the important stuff from the unimportant stuff.