Sunday, 4 December 2011

What a Rankin!

W. Eugene Smith
Rankin the renowned fashion photographer presents a riveting look at Life Magazine in this BBC documentary. Many of the great photographers of the last century are well represented including; W Eugene Smith. For those of you reading the blog regularly you will know that Smith is considered one of greatest photographers of all time. This picture of Emest Cerlani tending to a boy who is about to go blind is breath taking with the emotion in his face and the anonymous helping hands. The photo essay that Smith took over twenty three days was to highlight the chronic lack of country doctors and its impact on rural America. The Story of Life Magazine.
Margaret Bourke White
This picture taken by another Life photographer was the subject of discussion for my class this week. Some  were shocked that Bourke White agreed to learn how to use a spinning wheel, like the one shown, as part of the conditions to allow her to photograph Gandi. When you are young, often you do not really want to work for things. It is easy at that age to think that great things happen in life without trying. There are often many hurdles to over come to get the right image. Anything worth having you need to apply yourself and make sacrifices.  Margret Bourke White was a very attractive and charming 'lady' who slept with many Generals and a few Colonels to get access to take her pictures.  Naturally I did not mention this bit to my young charges as impressionable minds are easily corrupted!


  1. For a minute I thought you were writing about Ian Rankin whose books I have read and loved! But this is another Rankin and the photos here are classics by very well known and respected photographers.

  2. No the other one. It is a funny Scottish name. Produces interesting work.