Podcast: To Be or Olivia Bee


On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we welcome editorial, fashion, art, and music photographer Olivia Bee. That’s a lot of tags and she’s earned them all in a relatively short time span. Her “origin story” is well-documented in photo circles, so we won’t go into that much, but in a career now a decade old, we discuss where those early successes have brought her, what she enjoys about photography, and what she is working on now.

With clients that include Hermes, Nike, L’Oreal, Sony, and editorial assignments from Vice, Elle, the New York Times, and Complex Magazine, Bee has created a comprehensive body of commercial work while continuing to evolve the personal aesthetic that got her noticed in the first place. She is also now directing music and other videos and beginning a narrative film effort.

We speak with Bee from her bucolic Oregon acreage and discuss a wide range of topics, from the evolution of her gear, including her current use of view cameras, to her self-portraiture techniques, to publishing her first book, Kids in Love, with Aperture. We also spend some time discussing her work with musicians, the different approaches to an editorial assignment with a musician, and working on album art or a portrait. Finally, Bee lets us in on her dream assignment and Allan promises to make that dream come true. Join us for this pleasant and informative conversation.

Guest: Olivia Bee

Lovers, 2013; from “Kids in Love” © Olivia Bee
Baller, 2011; from “Kids in Love” © Olivia Bee
Purple Haze, 2011; from “Enveloped in a Dream” © Olivia Bee
from “Viva Las Vegas,” 2015 © Olivia Bee
from “Viva Las Vegas,” 2015 © Olivia Bee
Migos for Billboard, 2017 © Olivia Bee
Kesha for Billboard, 2017 © Olivia Bee
Larsen Thompson, 2016 © Olivia Bee
Birdy for REDValentino SS16 Campaign © Olivia Bee
Schiaparelli Couture © Olivia Bee
Max and Opal (Barely Seventeen), 2016 © Olivia Bee
Portrait of the American West, 2017 © Olivia Bee

Host: Allan Weitz
Senior Creative Producer: John Harris
Senior Producer: Jason Tables
Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves