Curtis Williams Photography

Arts & Entertainment

  • Author Curtis Williams
  • Published December 28, 2021
  • Word count 1,550

His Family Background:

William Custis came from a huge family of 9 kids, 7 young ladies and 2 young men. His mom was a family mother yet maintained a few sources of income for her family. His dad was a black Master Sergeant in the US Army and resigned following 30 years of administration. His family experienced quite a long while in Europe. When Curtis was six years old, he get to place his foot in Europe for the first time and rejoiced in many happy childhood memories.

Early life Struggles:

He began school in Germany because his father was posted in Germany after World War 2. His family moved to Los Angeles in the mid-60s. They first moved to Compton, California. The roads were savage and brutal. He spent his initial time in Los Angeles and had faced struggles that were tough upon him. Along these lines, his family moved them to the midtown region where life was and tough for them. After facing all these struggles, they were then moved to the USC University region. It was somewhat less brutal, there were posse exercises in Los Angeles. His folks then, at that point moved the family to the Fairfax Wilshire region, a Jewish network. There was substantially less wrongdoing and pack exercises. He went to Los Angeles High. At 18 years, he was completely clueless about his future. His family could not bear to send any of their youngsters to school.

An initiate towards better future:

One summer his dearest companion inquire as to whether he needed a task working at a production company that was working on making television commercials. He began filling in as a driver. He was so intrigued with the creation of the film. Occasionally he would work until they sent him home. It was such a peace of mind to be away from the hood that was loaded up with viciousness, wrongdoing, and police. He would not like to return home. In the period of one and half years of working for the creation, he was elevated from driver to prop space and then assistant producer.

By age seventeen, Curtis had become fixated on escaping the hood and handled an apprenticeship at a top creation house, Peterson Productions, in the core of Hollywood. He was excited to be in this imaginative climate and would stick around night-time, assisting without pay for as long as sixteen hours every day. He adored the fervour of this innovative local area, and he drew on the ability of top chiefs, promoting leaders and overseers of photography shooting public advertisements.

This organization (The Petersen Company) chiefs had all alumni from the Art Center College of Design. One of the chiefs, Richard Rucker who own 1/3 of the organization would always let William work on his creations. He was known around then to be one of the most mind-blowing directors for television advertisements. One day Richard Rucker call William to his office. He disclosed to him that he was beginning a film school inside the organization, and he had been chosen to become part of this school. His first task was to do a 5 minutes film of his choice. This was in the last part of the 60s, around then there was such a lot of social injustice. He decide to do a film on how ethnic minorities are dealt with so severely. William produced a film called "Dirty Old Man" he tracked down a black man in the city of Los Angeles, he was a drunkard. Around then there was no destitute like today. He took him to the organization studio. He films him from head to toe, without a doubt, exceptionally close shots. He needed his viewers to see and feel this individual heart. In the last shoot of this film, the camera gradually zooms out to uncover that is the man sitting at the top of a meeting table and there are six white men wearing suits to uncover that he is the President of the United States. William was completely clueless about the thing he was doing, he completed his 5 minutes and offered it to his guide, Richard Rucker and forget about his creation completely

One fine day Richard Rucker call him into his office. When he entered Mr Rucker office, he was congratulated and disclosed about his brief film’s success. He was also awarded Junior Academy Award at the age of twenty-two for his 5 minutes videography.

William was not able to comprehend at the point and did not have the foggiest idea of what was happening or why. A couple of months after the fact Mr Rucker called him to his office, he said that William had gotten a grant from Doyle, Dane and Bernbach Advertising Agency and the Petersen Company to go to the esteemed school, the Art Center College of Design for $125,000. At this point in life, William was not sure about how things were unfolding. He was simply doing what he was advised to do. Also, he was extremely glad for this time in my life. His remarkable intelligence and dedication assisted Curtis to graduate with honour.


At 22 years, he entered the Art Center College of Design. In his group, there were 34 students, just 2 of them finished their studies. He completed his 4 years degree in 2 years 8 months. Though William thought he would not be able to complete his studies, luck was on his side that time. He graduated at the top of his class. Doing his years at Art Center he made a compelling artwork collection. Right up till today his work is exceptionally famous.

When Curtis turned twenty-two VIVA magazine issue an article about Curtis in March 1976 that stated, “Twenty-seven-year-old Curtis Williams is very much an artist of our time: his camera is the latest in photographic technology and his subjects are modern, liberated women. Yet, the special effects Williams perfected after over a year of experimentation with film and darkroom techniques invite comparison with the oil paintings of the very greatest seventeenth-century masters.”

His Career:

His better half around then Robin Nord, whom he just captured as his subject, became popular as a top model in New York, Paris, and Milan. After completing Art Center, he was certain that his guide, My Rucker would need him to keep on working for The Petersen Company. He asked Mr Rucker, for his advice on the next step for his future. Mr Rucker told William “I might want you to go to New York to do your apprenticeship.” William was the happiest individual on the planet. He was not willing to remain in Los Angeles because of the racism and police debasement against the dark. Therefore, he was exceptionally glad to go to New York. This was his objective before going to Europe that he longed for since he was a child. For William, he felt more liberated from bigotry in Europe. Robin his young lady companion and him, went to New York with $200.00. William was never into thought about cash, he would just let his heart follow him.

William revealed to Robin that she would need to show until his photography occupations would come in. They went to the second-best modelling office (Wilhelmina Models) Robin was in a meeting with Wilhelmina Cooper. While William was in the hall. Wilhelmina comes to him into the hall and said, “I love your photographs of Robin” and employed him to capture her models and she had simply constructed another studio that William would work from. The first Wilhelmina model that William photographed was Margaux Hemingway. Robin and he left Wilhelmina that day with large grins. Later both went to an advertising agency on Madison Ave to get his portfolio. He was requested to address the proprietor. The proprietor disclosed to William that one of his customers had seen his work. Furthermore, need William to do 3 advertisements for them. It was a clothing company. William was paid $7000 for every advertising. This was the start of his set of experiences in New York.

Custis has contributed to many fields. He has worked as an advertising photographer, film producer and director. Even working in diversified fields his priority has always been designing and photography. He served over twenty years of his life as a photographer without any second thoughts about switching careers.

He was a professional with extreme talent and always proved to be an incredible asset to the companies therefore he was in demand due to his exceptional talent in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles. Several advertising companies wanted him to become a part of their organizations such as Young and Rubicam, Grey, Foote, Cone and Belding. Twenty years of his life were served in exploring the beauty of Europe with the camera’s eye. He worked in Sweden, Germany, Italy, England, France, and Spain. This is the reason he set his heading for Europe. There he was judged for his works and not for his colour.

The long list of his renowned clients included Vogue, Elle Magazine, Marie-Claire Magazine, Damernas Värld (Sweden), Ladies Home Journal, Viva Magazine, General Foods, United Negro College Fund, Clairol Hair Products, and the list continues.

Today he is serving as Publisher, Executive Editor, Art Director, and photographer for the renowned magazine “Melrose Heights” which has 10 million of viewership on its website alone.

Curtis Williams has worked as an advertising photographer, film producer, and director. However, his true love is design and photography, a field in which he has accumulated more than thirty years of experience.

As a professional he was in demand in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles with a list of advertising agencies such as Young and Rublicam, as well as Grey, Foote, Cone & Belding.

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