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Slim Aarons CNN Feature

Slim Aarons built a career documenting the lives of the rich and beautiful.

Working for publications like Town & Country, Harper's Bazaar and Life magazine, the late photographer spent five decades taking unapologetically glamorous pictures of aristocrats and socialites. Whether lounging in Italian villas, boating off the coast of Monaco or foxhunting in the English countryside, his globetrotting subjects epitomized high society -- and old money.

But according to the author of a new book on Aarons' work, the photographer's motive was neither to celebrate nor critique the opulence he encountered. He was driven by a journalistic curiosity about how the world's most privileged people lived, said Shawn Waldron, who co-wrote "Slim Aarons: Style.""He was a reporter," Waldron said over the phone from New York. "You have to think that so many of these pictures are created on assignment. He was sent somewhere to record what was happening at that particular place."

"I didn't do fashion," the photographer once said. "I did the people in their clothes that became the fashion."

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