Trump’s Time Magazine Cover & Mine
As an Argentine-born but now Canadian citizen I do not like President Donald Trump in the least. I think he is a shady character I would never buy a used car from. Just the allegations on his puss- grabbing should have been enough to disqualify the man from holding office in the United States. All those financial imbroglios of his and his underlings are questionable.
But somewhere here I believe that too much is being discussed about the man’s (or his PR department) on those Time Magazine fake covers.
In 1988 in the height of the magazine era I had taken portraits of runner Ben Johnson for Vancouver Magazine. When his drug scandal during the Olympics unfolded my friend a Vancouver Magazine art director suggested I send the images to Time. In 1988 Dahl had a new-fangled device called a scanner. He scanned my 6x7cm Ektachrome, and we faxed my Vancouver Magazine shots to Time. Subsequently I was paid lots of money for the Canadian cover. This was the dawning of the digital era. Dahl then made a handout promo piece that served me well for some years.
Not long after my wife Rosemary, our two daughters and I went to Hawaii. In the shopping malls there they had places where they took your portrait and put it on the magazine cover of your choice. I believe that Cosmopolitan was popular for young women who wanted to appear in racy clothing.
In the early 90s fellow photographers began to ask me if my Time Magazine cover was for real. By then some photographers were faking stuff and putting it into their portfolios. Discerning art directors did enquire and put those photographers in their place.
At one time I believe that a Polaroid hard copy print might have been accepted as evidence in a trial. Now the honesty of a photograph can only be judged by the knowledge we might have of a photographer’s ethics and reputation.
I do not believe that Time Magazine should sue Trump over the fake cover. The cover should be piled up on all that other evidence of the man’s lack of authenticity.
And it should be left there.
Originally published at blog.alexwaterhousehayward.com.