Helmut Newton at high noon!

In the middle 90’s, world-famous photographer, Helmut Newton came to Palm Springs, California to photograph me and Harold for an article being written by Ian Parker for The New Yorker Magazine. Helmut was an extraordinary man who had (a la Robbins style) changed the world of photography and Harold Robbins in the world of writing and publishing had changed that world. Both men were genius. The night before the shoot we had a dinner celebrating Helmut and June and invited several friends, including Arthur Coleman, who was a premiere photographer, his 13 year old daughter who was drop-dead gorgeous at the time with red hair and a milky complexion, Mike and Bob Pollock (producers of Dynasty and General Hospital), the handsome and charming, Gene and Betty Barry, and some friends from Monte Carlo who were visiting us at the time. Helmut and Harold were having a great time trying to persuade Arthur Coleman to let his daughter go to Paris and become a model. “She was a natural,” insisted both men who did know the beauty of women and a photographer’s dream.

As Helmut sat next to me, chatting at dinner I noticed him watching me, almost scrutinizing my expressions, never saying a word about the look he wanted for the next day. I had studied his work and I knew it wouldn’t be anything mundane and as it turned out it wasn’t. As he left that evening, his only comment was that he wanted “heavy eye make-up”. The following day in the high-noon sunlight of the desert, he would not allow us to see any of the test shots. I should have known, he was creating his own story. Anyway, it was the master’s work, but not one that I would say was beautiful, however it was unique. It told a story about the drama of age difference, harsh realities, and life under the microscope..almost a hooker and the old man shot. Many different shots from that photo shoot were publicized from The Sunday Telegraph Magazine in London to The New Yorker Magazine. A year later, the photograph was included in the Helmut Newton Sumo Book, (the world’s most expensive book, $10,000 in it’s first printing and has only gone up).


~ by haroldrobbinsnovels on October 18, 2010.

One Response to “Helmut Newton at high noon!”

  1. What a great story. Love the pic, too.

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