Photographer Alan Davidson died peacefully on 19 March 2020.
PAN noted December last year that Alan’s archive was now with Shutterstock who have very kindly let us re run this tribute they posted on their blog authored by Sarah Lysecki:
Photography Lost a Legend: Celebrating Alan Davidson
Alan Davidson spent fifty years playfully documenting celebs and exclusive events. Explore a retrospective of his career in this celebration of his life.
Alan Davidson was the master picture-taker behind a number of iconic images, from Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger dancing to a teenage Lady Diana Spencer. For fifty years he photographed some of the world’s most prolific people and memorialized countless historical moments.
This pioneering newspaper photographer and Shutterstock Editorial contributor passed away last week at the age of seventy. Today, we honor his contributions to the creative industry of editorial photography.
Whether behind the camera or in front of it, those who knew him—like his employer of fifty years, the UK tabloid The Daily Mail—described him as “always in the thick of action.” Alan, who was born in Leeds in 1949, left school at age fifteen to work on London’s famed Fleet Street as a messenger.
During his spare time taking pictures of London, he soon discovered his natural ability for capturing famous people. He got his big break after a picture he took of actress Rachel Roberts made the front page of the Daily Sketch on the day her husband Rex Harrison announced the breakup of their marriage. He then briefly worked at the Maidenhead Advertiser before landing his role at The Daily Mail.
What followed was fifty years of photographing the famous and infamous under one theme: capturing them at play. In celebration of his life and contribution to the world of celebrity photography, we’ve put together seven of his most famous pictures—one for each decade of his life. One of his most famous (and favorite) pictures was one he captured of a teenage Lady Diana Spencer in 1980 (above), who was two months into a relationship with Prince Charles. He caught the image through a limo window as she left the 50th birthday party of Princess Margaret at the Ritz.
We are honored to have some of Alan’s incredible images on Shutterstock Editorial as we say goodbye to this incredible artist. Alan’s work inspired people around the world, and we are humbled to have worked with him in any capacity during his time in the creative world.
A memorial service for Alan will be held when the time is right.