Instyle US & UK
Oil of Olay
James Houston was born in Sydney, Australia in 1965. At an early age, he began to study ceramic sculpture and design at school where he was awarded first in the state of NSW for Art in the HSC (High School Certificate). Shortly after leaving school, at 19 years old, Houston held his first solo exhibition of his ceramic sculpture.
In 1989, after being awarded the AFA (Advertising Federation of Australia) scholarship, Houston spent 3 years as an Art Director having the opportunity to work in Sydney and Los Angeles. While on a business trip to Tokyo in 1990, Houston bought a second-hand Nikon 35mm camera and took up photography as a hobby.
With his background in sculpture and design, Houston started working with the naked form as a photographic subject and developed a clean and graphic style that has become his signature. In 1993, Houston held his first photographic exhibition titled "Black and Blue" which focused on the human form interacting within natural landscapes.
In 1995, Houston was awarded the prestigious "Highest Score Overall" in Print for his 'Buried Nude' series by the AIPP (Australian Institute of Professional Photography). Taking an intense interest in fashion photography over the following years, Houston became one of Australia's leading fashion photographers contributing to magazines such as Australian Vogue, Italian Harper's Bazaar, Wallpaper and Oyster. Houston also photographed the first ever nude cover for Australian Vogue (January 1997).
Houston's first published book, RAW, sponsored by Hugo Boss Australia, was released in October 1997 to coincide with an exhibition featuring a collection representative of five years of portraits and nude forms in black and white. After winning several awards for design and photography, the RAW exhibition toured Australia for one year.
Influenced by sculptors such as Henry Moore, Houston continued to develop his unique style of bodywork and became the main contributing photographer for Black and White Magazine. In early 1999, Houston shot the official calendar for the 2000 Olympics held in Sydney and gave him the chance to work with over 150 of Australia's leading Olympic athletes.
In November 1999, Houston launched RAWMOVES, his second published book and exhibition that captured and contrasted the three leading dance companies in Australia. Shot in only five days, RAWMOVES went on to win several awards for both photography and design. RAWMOVES launched later in London and toured Asia for one year.
March 2000 Houston decided to base himself out of New York City where he would continue to focus on beauty and bodywork. Branching out into the celebrity world, James spent six months in 2002 living in Los Angeles shooting for magazines including American Vogue, British Glamour, French Glamour, German Glamour, and Interview. The celebrities that appreciate and request Houston's eye for beauty include Cate Blanchett, Kevin Spacey, Kirsten Dunst, Sheryl Crow, Guy Pearce and Matt Dillon, Paris Hilton & Mandy Moore.
In New York, James is recognized as one of the leading beauty/body photographers working between America and Europe for high profited clients such as Chanel, Clinique, Donna Karan, Max Mara, Gap, Oil of Olay, Hugo Boss and Victoria Secret.
Houston also had the pleasure to photograph Christy Turlington's yoga book and is currently working on his own Yoga and dance books.