“Once upon a time, life was not better. It was different. Once upon a time, everything was optimism, because nothing was bad for you.” – Slim Aarons, Poolside
The introductory words to ‘Poolside with Slim Aarons‘ written by William Norwich, do an exemplary job of capturing the essence of George Allen Aarons’ photography. Sitting with the book, flicking through the pages, you are drawn into a period of ‘jet set utopianism’ enjoyed by the fabulously wealthy and captured by “the photo laureate of the upper classes”, as the New York Times once phrased it.
It’s not the wealth that interests me specifically, it’s the carefree attitude that comes with it, and how Slim Aarons has managed to translate it – positively. There’s no denying his most iconic photos are of attractive people, doing attractive things, in attractive places – but I think for fans of his work today, there’s such a fascination with this period of distinct class, carefree love and expenditure that drives so much interest.
Here’s a handful of the best Slim Aarons poolside shots. To buy Poolside, click here. While you’re at it, also check out Lenny Kravitz’s Beverly Hills mansion which took inspiration from the book and the photographer’s portfolio of photos.