A copy of the Scavullo portrait of Sting was on my fridge for most of the 1980s, until it turned yellow & brittle, rather like me.
His father, who owned a Manhattan supper club, wanted his son to go into the family business, but when 19 year old Francesco Scavullo landed his 1st magazine cover for Seventeen, he bought his son a carriage house that would remain his home & studio until the end of his life.
Scavullo was best known for his covers of Cosmopolitan Magazine & his celebrity portraits, His big break was working at Vogue magazine under well-known fashion photographers Cecil Beaton & Horst P. Horst. The major turning point in his career came in 1965 when Cosmopolitan editor Helen Gurley Brown hired him to help develop a new, sexier image for the magazine. He was given complete freedom to select the models, wardrobe, make-up, & hair styling, Scavullo successfully created the image of the modern day Cosmo girl. Scavullo was also responsible for the famous Cosmopolitan centerfold of a nude Burt Reynolds.
Scavullo would go on to shoot every Cosmopolitan cover over the next 3 decades. Scavullo also created memorable shots for various, album covers, movie & Broadway show posters, including one for A Star is Born (the really crummy one featuring Barbra Streisand & Kris Kristofferson, not one of the 2 classic versions with Janet Gaynor or Judy Garland), & of Julie Andrews for Blake Edwards' Victor Victoria.
I always wanted to engage Scavullo to do the cover for my album- Jockstraps & Vicodin.