The September issue of Vogue. In the magazine industry, it’s the biggest issue of the year in terms of both size and sales. With the upcoming September issue, marking Vogue’s 120th anniversary, the publication is going all-out. Lady Gaga graces the cover, and the page count eclipses Vogue’s previous record for the biggest magazine ever published at a whopping 916 pages.
For Atlanta photographer Laurie Edward, the upcoming Vogue also marks the first use of his photography in the iconic publication. An advertisement in the upcoming issue for Blue MedSpa features Edward’s take on an iconic image.
“Timeless Beauty. That’s the title of the actual ad,” says Edward. “We thought of the very iconic and recognizable image of Marilyn Monroe and James Dean. We thought it would be very fitting for the Spa and the image it portrayed, Timeless Beauty, worked because that image is very iconic. We really reproduced it to where it has more of a modern kind of look and feel to it. I think people who recognize that image will be able to see and know immediately what we were trying to do and give in our version.”
Edward, who works at Blue MedSpa in addition to his job as a photographer, was selected by the business from a pool of several photographers because of his concept for the ad.
“I photographed it with the help of Mikel Cain and his team, and my team. We actually got a really beautiful image put together, and Vogue accepted the image,” says Edward.
The advertisement is an Atlanta-area exclusive, available only in subscriber editions of Vogue in the area – a number totaling roughly 20,000 copies of the magazine. Edward believes that the exposure will help broaden his reputation in the community.
“It’s my goal that this will take my photography to another level. I continue to learn, to grow as a photographer every time I do a shoot. I just hope the exposure will help to continue my success as a photographer.”
For Edward, photography has been a life-long love. He credits a camera that he received as a Christmas gift when he was young as kick-starting his passion for taking pictures.
“I remember walking around my neighborhood the entire month, it seemed like, just photographing as many things as I could,” Edward reminisces.
Professionally, though, Edward started after landing a job as a writer with his hometown newspaper. As is common with smaller publications, Edward found himself routinely taking photos to run alongside his articles. His photos started catching the attention of readers, which led to job offers.
“I would go to sporting games, and then people would see my photography in the newspaper, and they would call me and ask me to photograph their child or wedding or headshot or whatever. I continued to expand on that throughout the years,” explains Edward.
Ultimately, Edward ended up moving to Atlanta in 2004 with his partner, where he’s been able to expand his career. Atlanta has also given Edward more options for his preferred artistic form – the male physique.
“I love the male physique. I think the male physique is very beautiful,” Edward explains. “I’m intrigued by the beauty, by the shape of the male physique. I think it’s very artistic, and one of my goals is to photograph the male physique and to get people to look at the male physique in an artistic way, and not only in a sexual way.”
When asked how he plans to follow up this high-profile gig, Edward admitted that he’s unsure of what will happen next.
“Oh my gosh, I don’t know. I would love to do more high-fashion stuff, more editorials, get some more covers for national magazines. I really want to continue to feed off this energy and to really continue to grow as a photographer. Getting published more broadly is my goal; I’d love to work with GQ and more higher-end publications, [and to] do more locally as well.”
For now, though, Edward is basking in the knowledge that his work is reaching a brand-new level of exposure.
“I’m really excited about it. I don’t think it’s really set in yet, that I’m going to have a photo that appears in Vogue.”