Bodybuilding Legend Recalls Arnie Shoot

jimmy caruso

The Montreal Gazette paid tribute this week to a “legend” of the bodybuilding world – trainer/photographer Jimmy Caruso, now a feisty octogenarian.

Jimmy is best known perhaps for his black and white photos of another bodybuilding legend, Arnold Schwarzenegger, which were shot in 1975. Those photos have endured through the decades, and on Arnie’s birthday can often be seen on the cover of bodybuilding magazines.

The trainer first came to prominence in the 1960s, when his Caruso Gym on Notre Dame St produced a series of champion bodybuilders and boxers – along with a series of incredible photos of the champs, that led to his “Photo by Caruso” signature soon becoming known as a brand in its own right.

He told the Gazette: To me, everything was easy. Nobody taught me anything. I started taking photos because I didn’t like the way they were being photographed. I bought a camera, and within three months I had a cover shot.”

To illustrate his point, he produced a lovingly wrapped award – the 1966 International Federation of Bodybuilders Recognition Award as the “greatest physique photographer.”

Recalling his iconic Schwarzenegger shoot, Jimmy pulled out a folder of pictures, and told the Gazette: “I photographed him as soon as he came to America to compete in Mr. Universe – first in Florida when Joe Weider brought him to the US. Here, look at this one. It was taken in my gym, shot while he was looking in the mirror, in about 1969.”

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