Who Shot It Better? Bill Clinton: Marco Grob vs. Peter Yang

Who Shot It Better? Bill Clinton: Marco Grob vs. Peter Yang

If you saw Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic National Convention, then you’re probably aware of why he was featured on the cover of TIME magazine. To recap, he had four pages of typed notes from which he deviated significantly and gave, what some pundits are calling, the best speech of his life. The same cannot be said of Clint Eastwood (although he’s been a popular topic of conversation amongst chairs). Regardless of your political persuasion, you can’t deny Slick Willy’s charisma, and that gets him published a lot. Let’s take a look.

If you like stylized and desaturated portraits, Marco Grob is your guy. His style reminds me of Dan Winters – both guys have some pretty amazing light sculpting capabilities. In this particular portrait, we have two light sources: a big key light, and a very subtle rim light on the right side of Bill’s face. Did he need it? No, but having it gives the image a little more stylization, and it evens out his hair and softens the shadow on his collar. Bill’s ruddy complexion is still in full view.

We showed you this Peter Yang cover before when we contrasted it to the image Platon took ten years earlier for Esquire. Brown suit, brownish background. A thinner, more subdued Clinton. The image is well lit in that signature Peter Yang style. I could do without the drop shadow on the Esquire logo, but we’re critiquing the photography and not the graphic design.

Verdict: I’m a Clinton fan, but I think that no matter how much he ages, he’ll always possess a bit of mischief (and confidence/hubris) in his constitution. Marco’s image really captures this, and you can almost hear Bill saying, “Yeah, I killed it!” Plus the cover type says, “BILL TO THE RESCUE.” Show that to the grandkids, right? You win this time, Marco Grob!

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Allen Murabayashi is the Chairman and co-founder of PhotoShelter. He co-hosts the "I Love Photography" podcast on iTunes.

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