Louis Mendes

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Louis Mendes at work in New York with his Speed Graphic camera.

Louis Mendes (born June 5, 1940) is a photographer from New York City who is known for his signature press camera, portraits and street photography.

Louis Mendes was born in a working-class family in Jamaica, Queens, New York in 1940. He was a young child when his elder sister handed him a camera to begin documenting family events. Later Mendes would study at the RCA Institute of Technology. After stints of working in retail including Macy's on 34th street, Mendes turned to photography.[citation needed]

Since the 1970s Mendes has traveled around the United States photographing people in public places. He has photographed celebrities including Spike Lee, Denzel Washington, Cab Calloway, Tito Puente and Gordon Parks.[citation needed]

Mendes is never seen without his signature Graflex Speed Graphic; he has also used a Polaroid Spectra, modified Polaroid 110b, View Camera and medium and large format cameras.[citation needed]

Louis Mendes has been written about by David Gonzalez in the New York Times.[1][2][3] Mendes was featured in "One Hundred Jobs" by Ron Howell photographed by Ozier Muhammad published in 2000.[4] Mendes was also cited for his flash techniques in "Photographic Lighting Simplified" by Susan McCartney published 2003.[5] Mendes appears in Harvey Stein's 1998 book "Coney Island."

Louis Mendes resides in Harlem, New York and has two daughters.[citation needed]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ David Gonzalez (April 1, 1995). "Have Camera, Will Travel". New York Times. 
  2. ^ David Gonzalez (January 3, 2010). "A Camera and Eye, Both One of a Kind". New York Times. 
  3. ^ Kerri Macdonald: New York Times LENS blog "Must See: He Kept His Speed Graphic" posted January 5, 2010
  4. ^ "One Hundred Jobs" by Ron Howell photographed by Ozier Muhammad published in 2000
  5. ^ "Photographic Lighting Simplified" by Susan McCartney published 2003

External links[edit]