A professor emeritus at PCC, where he taught for 36 years, Wilhelm Bleckmann moved to Los Angeles from his native Germany in 1965.
In the mid-1970s he served as director of photography for Society West, a magazine “primarily for the Bel-Air and Beverly Hills crowd.” This gave him access to charity events and award shows attended by some of the most popular film and television personalities of the day.
Beyond its appeal to pop-culture anthropologists, Bleckmann’s portfolio is a testament to his preference for candid, rather than posed, compositions. When he was a press photographer “I preferred to capture people going about their business rather than smiling for the camera,” he said.
His secret was a lone-wolf approach. He stated: “I like to stay away from the pack. That allows me to capture most of my subjects in fluid rather than static moments. And to me, those pictures are always much more interesting.