Fashion Photographer Will Shively


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With a career that has lasted for over four decades, Will Shively has become best known for his vast body of portraiture work. He attended Ohio State University in the 1970’s and secured a BFA in painting. While working as a janitor in a local manufacturing plant he discovered photography, Will worked hard to master his craft and became a highly respected commercial photographer in Columbus. He has had such notable clients as DSW, Victoria’s Secret, Abercrombie to name a few.

In the early 1990’s will moved away from the more traditional commercial work and concentrated on art photography, predominantly using film development techniques and the layering of 35-millimeter slides to produce impressionist style paintings. Will has always striven to expand the boundaries of what we understand as conventional photography.

Over the years Will has struggled with alcoholism, child custody battles, divorce and financial ruin. He went from earning in excess of $400,000 a year to living in a van with his three kids.

To me, his fashion work has a mix of contemporary but with a twist in the post processing and the execution of the image, his photographs have an almost dreamlike quality about them. He is not afraid to experiment with light and even image quality or focus. He has the ability to produce some amazing abstract style images yet can rein it in and produce a stunning portrait that would fit easily into any of the high-end fashion magazines.

“If you don’t know there are limitations, you are free to do what you want”.  (Tam, 2017)

Some of Wills work




Bibliography: Will Shively. (2017). Fine Art Photoghrapher & Professional Portrait Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed 22 Mar. 2017].

Tam, K. (2017). The Life of Iconic Commercial Fashion Photographer Will Shively | Fstoppers. [online] Fstoppers. Available at: [Accessed 22 Mar. 2017].