Glam Gals

Image of the Day – Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Taylor and Rayne at 12 years old

Taylor and Rayne at 12 years old

A few years ago I took my oldest granddaughter, Taylor, and youngest daughter, Rayne, to Glamor Shots for portraits. I’d wanted to do something special for their mothers for Christmas and nice portraits of the girls was my idea of something special. I walked into the Mall of Louisiana with what for all the world looked like two twelve year old little girls but it didn’t stay that way. It was almost scary to watch the transformation of the two girls from youngsters to young ladies as the makeup and hair artists did their magic.

This was one of those wonderful yet profound moments when it slaps me in the face I’m getting older but it was also a reminder that I’m at a wonderful and fulfilling point in my life that two beautiful, intelligent, active young ladies are a part of my life. The girls had a great time getting “made up” and donning new outfits of clothes I’d bought them on a shopping trip the evening before. The photographer was great at what he did and made the girls at ease right away which I’m thankful for because they seem so natural in the finished photographs.

Not the least important thing to know about Taylor and Rayne is not only are they beautiful, well adjusted, happy, healthy young ladies but that most importantly they are also honor roll students with big plans for their future. I may have to get old to see it but I look forward to seeing how far in life these two talented and intelligent girls go.

Greatest Images of Our Time – Migrant Mother and her Children

Migrant Mother by Dorothea Lange

Migrant Mother by Dorothea Lange

This well known and famous photograph of a migrant mother, Florence Owens Thompson, and her children was taken by Farm Security Administration photographer Dorothea Lange in Nipomo, California, in March of 1936. The family arrived in the Pajaro Valley later that day, hoping to find work picking lettuce.

Despite the fact that these new migrant workers fit the profile of the farm owner’s ideal farm worker by being white and speaking English, they soon found themselves saddled with the same stereotypes that had been heaped on their predecessors in the fields, most notably that they were biologically and culturally inferior to the resident population. Though they often referred to themselves proudly as “Okies,” “Arkies,” and “Texies,” these became derogatory terms when used by California-born residents.

Photographer Dorothea Lange was best known for her Depression-era work for the Farm Security Administration. Lange’s photographs humanized the tragic consequences of the Great Depression and profoundly influenced the development of documentary photography.

In 1941, Lange was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship for excellence in photography. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, she gave up the prestigious award to record the forced evacuation of Japanese Americans to relocation camps, on assignment for the War Relocation Authority. She covered the rounding up of Japanese Americans and their internment in relocation camps, highlighting Manzanar, the first of the permanent internment camps. To many observers, her photograph of Japanese-American children pledging allegiance to the flag shortly before they were sent to internment camps is a haunting reminder of this policy of detaining people without charging them with any crime or affording them any appeal.

Her images were so obviously critical that the Army impounded them. Today her photographs of the internment are available in the National Archives on the website of the Still Photographs Division, and at the Bancroft Library of the University of California, Berkeley.

In 1945, Lange was invited by Ansel Adams to accept a position as faculty at the first fine art photography department at the California School of Fine Arts (CSFA). Imogen Cunningham and Minor White joined as well.

In 1952, Lange co-founded the photographic magazine Aperture. In the last two decades of her life, Lange’s health was poor. She suffered from gastric problems, including bleeding ulcers, as well as post-polio syndrome — although this renewal of the pain and weakness of polio was not yet recognized by most physicians.

Lange died in 1965 of esophageal cancer yet her images, this one in particular, have stood the test of time.


~ by rfoxx on July 21, 2009.

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