Having done more than 185 cover shoots and still counting, Tonne Goodman discussed her career at Vogue and before that, Harper’s Bazaar and The New York Times Magazine, along with Sam Shahid, president and creative director of Shahid & Co., the ad agency, at Club Monaco Wednesday night.
Goodman released a book this month called “Point of View,” that was art directed by Shahid. The discussion was moderated by Ivan Shaw, corporate photography director of the Condé Nast Archives, who was a producer of the coffee table book (Abrams Books, $75). All three were dressed in similar beige Club Monaco pants suits.
Goodman, who was fashion director of Vogue from 2000 to 2018 and today serves as a contributing editor, also held posts at The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The New York Times Magazine, Life, Calvin Klein and Harper’s Bazaar.
While showcasing many of the book’s photographs overhead on a big screen — ranging from Carolyn Murphy and Christy Turlington to Naomi Campbell, Caroline Kennedy, Adele, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Gigi Hadid, George Clooney, Gisele Bündchen and Serena Williams — Goodman said the industry dramatically changed in 2001 when celebrities replaced models as the cover subjects. That made things more difficult, but resulted in increased sales for the magazines.
“It’s a very different process. With models, they’re your absolute best friend and cohort and they throw the clothes on and they know what they’re doing and they’re brilliant,” Goodman said. “With celebrities, they’re also brilliant but in their own way. They’re possessive of their identities, so you have to ease them into assuming the Vogue identity which is a standard….It becomes a trust issue and it always works out. Even the difficult shoots.”
Among the photographers who were highlighted and discussed during the presentation were Steven Meisel, Herb Ritts, Bruce Weber, Mario Testino, Peter Lindbergh, Inez Lamsweerde, Vinoodh Matadin, Helmut Newton, Steven Klein and Annie Leibovitz. It was a walk down memory lane for many in the audience, who included Grace Coddington, Paul Cavaco, Wendy Goodman, Carolyn Murphy, Charles Fagan, and Mark Bozek.
Shahid, who talked about his career at Calvin Klein and later at his own firm working for clients such as Versace and Banana Republic, recalled the Calvin Klein onsert that he art directed, which was originally presented to Rolling Stone (which turned it down), Interview and finally Vanity Fair. He said Calvin Klein ended up paying $100,000 to VF for the 116-page ad onsert.
Asked what was her most rewarding shoot, Goodman said it was hands-down Michelle Obama whom she styled three times.
When questioned who is on her wish list to style for a cover, Goodman paused for a second and replied, “The next female president of the United States,” which got a round of applause.