TINA: Photographer

Norman Seeff

Tina Turner - Norman Seeff - Photographer

Photo Shooting in 1983 / Copyright by Norman Seeff

Norman Seeff is a photographer and filmmaker, born 1939 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Since he moved in 1969 to the United States, he has documented over 500 sessions with artists of many disciplines including musicians, actors, writers and politicians including Ray Charles, Joni Mitchell, Steve Jobs, Steve Martin as well as Ike & Tina Turner and Tina Turner solo. He was a great admirer of the artistry of both Ike and Tina and the session with the duo in 1975 was the first he documented on 16mm film. He also was responsible for the Photography and Art Direction for their album What You Hear Is What You Get in 1971 and Let Me Touch Your Mind from 1973.

In 1983, he was asked to take a series of images of Tina as she rebuilt her career, resulting in the cover for her single Let's Stay Together. The photo session with Tina was also filmed and featured spontaneous live performances.

The shoot with Ike and Tina Turner 1975 in Los Angeles was among the most memorable of his career: „The footage was riveting. They performed an amazing version of 'Nutbush City Limits' right there in my studio. There was incredible energy and vitality between them. Tina was a whirlwind of freedom and spontaneity and she was teasing Ike, trying to get him to loosen up, but there was an edge about it. It was as if she was challenging him just a bit. It felt almost dangerous but at the same time ecstatically creative. Ike, on the other hand, was reserved and controlled. He was very charismatic. He had a regal, majestic quality about him, and a tremendous sense of who he was. A planned shot of the pair kissing didn’t pan out— the two never quite got there. I didn’t see love and affection between them as much as I saw an intense creative interaction.“

Ike & Tina Turner - Norman Seeff - Photographer

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