At 9 o’clock on a breezy July evening in Santa Monica, Rose Hartman was on her best behavior. It was, after all, a special occasion.
Hartman is the acid-tongued, self-made celebrity portraitist whose works — including an iconic photograph of Bianca Jagger looking particularly beguiling atop a white horse amid the lusty clamor of Studio 54 — and personal endeavors are explored in director Otis Mass’ debut documentary, “The Incomparable Rose Hartman.”
It’s “a character study,” as Mass put it, of the woman who built a career documenting New York’s high society and pioneered a new kind of paparazzi-portraitist style of photography.
In conjunction with the movie’s West Coast...