MARTIN RYTER STARTED SHOOTING ON HIS 12TH BIRTHDAY. HE GOT HIMSELF A SMALL CAMERA WITH ONE ROLE OF BLACK & WHITE FILM WHICH HE SHOT ON HIS FRIENDS IN ONE DAY, AND WHEN IT WAS GONE HE COMPLETELY LOST INTEREST IN THE CAMERA. BUT WHEN THE PHOTOS RETURNED FROM THE LAB AFTER HIS MOTHER SENT IT THERE, IT CAME WITH A NOTE OFFERING TO PURCHASE THE SHOTS FOR A BROCHURE. ASTOUNDED AS SHE WAS, MARTIN’S MOM TOOK THE MONEY AND USED IT TO SIGN 12 YEARS OLD MARTIN UP FOR A CORRESPONDENCE PHOTO SCHOOL. READ HERE THE STORY OF THE INCREDIBLE CAREER OF MARTIN RYTER, TOLD BY HIMSELF.
"I lived in a small town in New Mexico. Since I was underage of enrollment, so my mother put me in correspondence photo school as her. My instructor was under the impression that I was an adult and at 12 I thought his comments on my work was pretty ruthless. He would return the assignments graded and would include a cassette taped critique. I hated those tapes. In my second year of school, I received a phone call – the caller was looking for my mom – and it was the voice that I knew very well. It was my instructor. He, unaware of me, asked for my Mrs. Ryter. At 14, and never been able to hold my tongue, I replied “you’re an asshole.” I then explained to him he had been lied to about who was his student and suggested he’d call my mom at her work. I truly hoped I’d would be thrown out of school. Didn’t happen. He called my momma and explained he wanted me to assist him on some upcoming shoot in the New Mexico deserts. Of course I did not want to spend my summer working for him but I lost and soon I was lugging shit for the NY shooter. He turned out to be very nice and much to by dismay I was actually learning from him. Now, all these years later I’m astound with the events of my early career because my instructors name was Richard Avedon."
"I never stopped shooting. All though high school and college I used my camera to become popular at school.But it wasn’t till after high school that I learned boys would actually take their clothes off for the camera and then photography took a whole new meaning. I shot my first set of nudes at 18 and the boy was Tom Baker. He was juicy. I won an award from Kodak for one of my films. I went to Vietnam during the war and worked as a photographer, flying all over the war zones in helicopters. Back in the states in my early 20’s I stumbled on fashion photography by answering a help wanted ad. When it became clear I was working for a scam school I left and went to NYC, where I re-established my connaissance with Eileen Ford, whom I met on an earlier trip. After a first bad meeting, bringing with me 8 pissed off wanna be models, Eileen contacted me in my hotel and invite me back to her office for a talk. I went and she let me hang out with her a whole day, and thoroughly explained what a model was."
"I eventually moved to new York and was hired by a start up agency named Elite. The owner, John Casablancas, took me under his wing and I headed up the new faces desk, where I was the whipping post for the likes of Janice Dickinson (you think she’s bad now). It did however put me in the presence of some of the worlds best shooters. Elite moved to San Fransisco in the early 80’s, and I moved with them. It was here when I moved to full time shooter, which I continue to this day. Millions of images later, I am still looking for my best shot. Got any nudes I need to meet?"
"Oh yes, I won a pony on my 5th birthday…" -B-
MARTIN RYTER | BEAUTIFUL