The Great Life Photographers (Paperback)
"The Great LIFE Photographers" is the most comprehensive anthology of LIFE photography ever published, featuring the best work of every staff photographer who worked for the famous magazine, and that of a handful of others who shot for LIFE. It was always the photographers who made LIFE great, and this is the most vivid and exciting portrait of those men and women that has ever been produced.
The book offers more than 100 portfolios including those of Alfred Eisenstaedt, Margaret Bourke-White, Carl Mydans, Gordon Parks, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Capa, Ralph Morse, Nina Leen, Harry Benson, Philippe Halsman, and Joe McNally, whose work for LIFE in the aftermath of September 11 was in the finest tradition of the magazine. Each portfolio includes a short biography, offering an intimate look at the people behind the lens.
Here are the defining moments of the 20th century, including MacArthur wading ashore by Mydans, Capa's D-Day landing at Omaha Beach and, of course, Eisenstaedt's sailor kissing the nurse. Here are the first pictures taken from inside the womb and the first taken from outer space. Here are powerful scenes from Tiananmen Square and from the American South during the Civil Rights movement. LIFE helped make icons of Sophia Loren and Marilyn Monroe, the Beatles and Michael Jackson, and those indelible photographs are here too.
This attractive new paperback edition is an affordable way to own some of the most memorable photographs ever made, stunningly reproduced in black and white and full color.
About the Author
LIFE magazine was founded by Henry Luce in 1936 and chronicled every aspect of the human condition through the end of the 20th century.
Gordon Parks is one of the early Life photographers and among the most esteemed photographers of our time. He is also an acclaimed poet, filmmaker and composer. He has published several books with Bulfinch, including the acclaimed Half Past Autumn (1997).
John Loengard is a veteran LIFE photographer and a chronicler of LIFE's illustrious history. He received the Henry Luce Lifetime Achievement Award for 2004 from Time, Inc.
Gordon Parks, born into poverty and segregation on a farm in Kansas in 1912, was the youngest of 15 children. He worked at odd jobs before buying a camera at a pawnshop in 1938 and training himself to become a photographer. Parks was a photographer at the Farm Security Administration and later at the Office of War Information in Washington D.C. from 1941 to 1945. As a freelance photographer, his 1948 photo essay on the life of a Harlem gang leader won him widespread acclaim and a position from 1948 to 1972 as the first black staff photographer and writer for Life Magazine, the largest circulation picture publication of its day. He was also a noted composer and author, and in 1969, became the first African American to write and direct a Hollywood feature film, The Learning Tree, based on his bestselling novel of the same name. This was followed in 1971 by the hugely successful motion picture, Shaft. Parks was the recipient of numerous awards, including the National Medal of Arts in 1988 and over 50 honorary doctorates. Parks died in 2006 at the age of 93.
John Loengard joined Life magazine's staff in 1961. Hailed by American Photographer as Life's most influential photographer during the 1960s and instrumental in its re-birth as a monthly in 1978, Loengard served as its picture editor until 1987. He has published several books of his photographs: Pictures Under Discussion, which won the 1987 Ansel Adams Award, Celebrating the Negative and Georgia O'Keeffe at Ghost Ranch. His photographs have appeared in Life, People, The Sunday Times (London) and Travel & Leisure magazines and are in the Eastman House, the Vassar College Art Gallery, The International Center of Photography, and the De Menil Foundation collections among others.
A Good Morning America Best Coffee Table Book of the Season, Charles Gibson Selection, 2004
I cannot recommend the LIFE collection highly enough. It intrigues and stimulates more than the sea of data that sweeps through our lives each day.
Images such as one of the Beatles cavorting in a swimming pool are instantly recognizable, but less well-known photos, such as a 1952 shot of a roller-skating horse, are equally charming.
The Great LIFE Photographers... depicts the evolution of photography from the early 1940s until the end of the 20th century. [It] is 600 pages from start to finish and will captivate and inspire any type of photographer.
The Great LIFE Photographers features pictures by more than 200 of the century's best photojournalists on staff at the magazine throughout its history. But lesser-known works still retain enormous storytelling power decades later, attesting to the skill and artistry of photographers who placed themselves mere feet from the action to frame the shot.
A great gift.
-The Art Quarterly