Friday, January 26, 2007

Alfred Eisenstaedt Biography

Alfred "Eisie" Eisenstaedt was one to be remembered. He captured famous moments for over sixty years. Born December 6, 1898 in West Prussia, to Regina and Joseph Eisenstaedt he was one of three sons. His first spark for photography started when his uncle gave him a Kodak No. 3 folding camera at the age 14. Alfred's spark for photography was put on hold for a few years, when he was drafted into the German Army at the age of 17. While in battle, Alfred was badly injured, but pulled through. He was the only survivor of his artillery. After his injury, he was sent home. This is when his spark was reignited. As his injuries began to heal he slowly began to visit museums to study light and composition. He then started capturing his own moments and developing them in his own bathroom.The first photo that Alfred was truly proud of was of a woman playing tennis. After showing this photo to a friend he discovered he could enlarge the photo to enhance its qualities. This is when Alfreds spark tuned into a flame. At the age of 31 he had become a full time photographer. He was greatly inspired by the work of Martin Munkasci and Dr. Erich Salomon, whom he called the father of candid photography.In 1949 Alfred married Kathy Kaye who lived in New York. While in New York, he started working for the Pacific and Atlantic Photos, which is now the Associated Press. While working there he shot a vast variety of moments. These included portraits of the famous political and social events of the time.He later began working with three other photographers; Margaret Bourke-White, Thomas McAvoay, and Peter Stackpole. They started a project that was kept secret until its release in LIFE magazine on November 23 1936. Until its release the project was only know as Project X. By this time the Cold War was taking place. Alfred could not go shoot this footage though because he was not yet a citizen.Alfred wanted to recapture the famous kiss in Times Square on VJ Day, so he followed a sailor around who was kissing everyone. The next thing he knew the soldier was grabbing a girl in white and giving Alfred the picture he had been waiting for. This did not turn out to be Alfred's favorite picture though. His favorite was of a young woman in a box seat at La Scala Opera. Although this was Alfred's favorite photo, it was never printed.In 1942 Alfred finally became a citizen and was able to go over seas to document the war. Alfred then traveled to Korea, Italy, and England where Winston Churchill posed for him. Other famous celebrities also posed for Alfred such as Marilyn Monroe, JFK, Marlene Dietrich, Albert Einstien, and his favorite Sophia Loren. Alfred then said "You learn something form every picture you take."Although Alfred was well known and photographed the famous, his first major retrospective show was not until the ripe age of 88 when the International Center of Photography presented 125 of his prints. Alfred shot nearly 100 covers for LIFE Magazine and 10,000 prints. Alfred won many awards and was admired by many. John Loengaurd described Alfred's greatness by saying "He never tries to please editors. He only makes pictures that please him." Alfred was a prime example for those who also have the spark for photography.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Alfred Eisenstaedt

Name of Partner: Michelle Desanto
Name of Photographer: Alfred Eisenstaedt

We chose Alfred because his photographs were the most visualy appealing of all the photographer's works that we looked at. We really liked the vintage look of the photographs.The fact that he uses mostly people in his photographs is also very interesting. He really focuses on people in their daily lives and makes it beautiful. His celebrity photos are also very beautiful. The pictures of the Kennedy's and Marilyn Monroe are really interesting because they are candid. Alfred really seemed to know just the right angles to make a photograph a work of art.
Just look a this. -------->
He is an amazing photographer and that's the whole reason why we chose him (even though we can't pronounce his last name)!

Black Triangle Excerpt

1. I think Koudelka focused on the places to show the emptiness of the location. You can tell he is trying to create a feeling isolation due to the contamination of the area, and you can’t achieve that with people in the picture (plus they probably didn’t want to come anywhere near it).
2. The captions definitely make the picture more ominous. At first glance you might just see dirty objects in the middle of nowhere but then you read the captions and find out that landscape is not dirty, it’s contaminated.
3. I don’t think these pictures would be as effective if they weren’t panorama. I think it really captures the landscape and the emptiness.
4. I think Koudelka presents these photos in black and white to portray the desolation and destruction by the explosion. Plus I don’t think these pictures would be too colorful anyway.
5. These pictures make me feel as if I am right there looking at the destruction. I think I would feel differently about these photos if they were taken from a different angle, like a birds-eye view. I think it would less effective.

Native American Photographs

Question in Box on pg. 352
Upon viewing the photographs on page 352, one would infer that all three are pictures of mothers with their babies. You have to be careful, however, the assumptions you make by examining photographs from other cultures. What is acceptable in our culture may be done differently in other cultures. For example: you can not assume by looking at these photographs that the woman and child are even related. Perhaps they are in a tribe where the whole community takes care of the child. The next-door neighbor could be holding the child. Someone could make the assumption that the backpack looking-thing two of the babies are sitting in looks uncomfortable. But holding a baby while traveling long-distances during the day could be dangerous for both the woman and the baby.

Commentary on the Old Photograph

Questions in Green:
1. It looks like this photo was taken sometime in the late twenties, early thirties. Since the ladies are wearing heavy fur coats I am going to assume it was taken in the winter. The location of the picture is hard to tell since there really isn’t much in the background. I am also going to assume it was taken in the city, most likely New York, because the ladies look very well dressed. I don’t think if this picture had been taken in the country during this time period that the ladies would be so dressed up.
2. They actually look like a family. The man and the older woman are about the same age, while the girl on the left is younger. He is also looking at the older woman and not the younger indicating that he is probably talking to his wife.
3. These people are obviously rich and from a good family. The older woman looks like she would be sort of a busy-body and a gossip. The man looks like he is the cigar-by-the-fire play-cards-with-your-buddies type of guy. The personality of the younger woman isn’t very obvious in this picture. She looks like she is very sheltered and conservative.
4. It looks like this photo was taken as one of those “Let’s have a picture of the family” moments. It looks like they were posing but the picture was taken right as the man was saying something to the older woman. It almost looks like a travel photo, as if they were taking a picture as they were on their way to somewhere.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Charles Moore- "Alabama 1965"

Charles Moore- “Alabama, 1965”

The picture above shows a college student being chased by a mounted policeman in Alabama. The student had gathered with a group of other college students in support of the Selma marchers, they were then attacked by a large mounted posse. I thought this picture was particularly interesting because the college student being attacked is white and the mounted man is also white. This just shows the viewer the pure hatred going on at that time. Some people at that time not only hated black people, but they also hated people that supported black people. I also thought this was a great action shot ( as sick at it is ) because it is right before the student is struck with the baton in the man’s hand. It is a really scary picture because of the fact that it is so action oriented and the student being chased looks so scared. I mean wouldn’t you be scared if a man on a horse was chasing you with a stick?

Ernst Haas: Color/ Black and White Photographs

“Write Soon” by Ernst Haas
I really thought this black and white picture was very beautiful. There is a lot of emotion and depth in the picture. It shows a couple on a train platform saying their goodbyes. I like the fact that there is a lot of mystery to picture. The viewer doesn’t know how long the man is going to be gone, or even if it is the man that’s leaving. Either way you can see the tears and emotion in the woman’s face as she hugs her lover. I don’t think that this picture would work very well in color. I really like the picture has a vintage feel plus I think the picture would be less effective. There is also some interesting framing going on in this picture as the couple is being framed by the darkness around them.

“Nature and Machine”
This picture could only be done in color; hands down, no question. The color in this photograph is stunning. I have absolutely no knowledge of cars so I’m not going to even attempt to name this car, but I do love that it is a beautiful blue vintage car in front of a gorgeous blue sky. Normally blue on blue wouldn’t work very well, but these two blues compliment each other very nicely. I also like the title and how it describes the photo. It really captures that this solitary car is in the middle of a desert. The slight angle of the ground as well as the car not being quite in the center makes the image more interesting.

This photo is much different than “Write Soon”. This photo is full of color and happy emotion while the other is very dark and poignant. Neither one of these pictures would work very well as their opposites, but they have a life of their own just how they are.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


So Im taking J492 with Mr. Weller and our last assignment was finding a blog to profile. Well I found an interesting photography blog I thought you guys might be interested in! Check it out!

Monday, January 15, 2007

The Race for Information (Turns out the US is the Tortoise)

It is truly amazing just how far technology has come today. It used to be that when you flipped on the news or spread open the news paper the news you read was the news you got, whether it was manipulated or not. Now the average Joe can choose what news he gets through blogs, news networks, and even video sites such as YouTube. It is no longer possible for the government to regulate news; the power has been transferred to the people. The government is even realizing what a powerful tool the media is.
This is not a new realization, however, so called “third world” countries have been using the power of video for years to rally support for their ideals. It is amazing that for so long the news in America has been so regulated, while these countries that barely have running water have been making propaganda films and television feeds for years.
I wouldn’t say that we are losing the info war; we are just way behind. I definitely don’t agree with the showing of soldiers being shot, such as seen on Iraqi propaganda films available on YouTube would help the American public, but I do believe in adding little leeway on the restrictions of images coming from Iraq to mainstream news. War is war and it does need to be shown so people can understand what war is really like.
If you were to search “Baghdad Sniper” on YouTube it will display over thirty videos from both Iraqi and American sources. Videos of American soldiers being shot while Iraqi chanting plays in the background are among the particularly disturbing footage. Search even further into the YouTube footage and you will find images of military convoys being bombed and even an air assault on Iraqi insurgents: something you will definitely not see on CNN.
We may be way behind in the race for information domination, but you have to admit, we are catching up quickly. Sites such as YouTube have made “real” news more readily available to the American public. Blogs have created a way to instantly share political ideas with people from all over the world. Phones with cameras and video capabilities have the ability to upload information on the Internet. We have a multitude of capabilities we just need to utilize them.

For more info visit:

Thursday, January 11, 2007

9/11 Cartoon

"Osama Bin Laden? Now there's something for the old "Where are they now" file!" -Jon Stewart December 2006

The cartoon above by Jeff Koterba I believe really portrays just how off track we are now from where we started on 9/11. September 11, 2001 is a day that will be embedded in America's mind forever. It is the day we "lost our innocence." Our President promised us that we would get back at the people that did this to us. An "eye for an eye" if you will. Fast forward to January 2007, over five years after the twin towers fell, Osama Bin Laden is nowhere to be found in the middle east or in the newspapers.
Osama openly admitted to orchestrating the 9/11 attacks through the Al Queda network. Sure we looked for him for a little while but it got so tiring! Oh, and all the sudden Iraq has weapons or mass destruction. So over we go to Iraq to a war that has gone on longer than World War Two, and guess what: no WMDs. All of this to honor the people who died on 9/11. But wait, Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. So how are we honoring them?
This cartoon suggests that the best thing to honor our fallen Americans would be to capture and kill Osama Bin Laden. I don't necessarily think that the best way to honor them would be to kill a seven foot Arabian madman, but I do believe this cartoon reminds Americans what we have forgotten.

My Bio

My Bio
Hello and welcome to my blog. My name is Elyse Van Fleet and I am a nineteen-year-old freshman at IPFW. Hopefully, through this blog you will find out a little more about me and my writing. I suppose the best way to start a biography is from the beginning so here it goes.
I was born on November 17th, 1987 in Goshen. My parents are Neil and Carol Van Fleet. My mother is a teacher at West Noble Middle School and my dad is a purchasing agent at an RV manufacturer. I have one sibling, my brother Chris (but I call him Bub), who is now 26 years old and recently married. I lived outside of Lagrange until I was seven when we moved to Ligonier. I attended West Noble throughout grade school and graduated from West Noble High school this past June. My senior year is when I really got interested in writing as well as politics.
That leads me to the present, the most obvious part of the biography. My major is currently General Studies with a high concentration in journalism. I have no intention of becoming a journalist, but more on that later. I am a full-time student with a full-time job at a tax office in Nappanee as a receptionist. This is why I am taking mostly Internet classes this semester. The majority of my time is spent with my boyfriend Andrew, who is the love of my life, as cliché as that sounds. The rest of my time is spent on art projects such as portraits, photography, or even something a simple as designing a flier for someone. Creative projects like these are what I love to do, which brings me to my next point.
The career goal is to become a graphic designer. Since I love art so much, I decided to make it my career. I am moving to Kettering, Ohio, outside of Dayton, in the fall to attend the School of Advertising Art. SAA offers a two-year program with about 120 students in attendance. I am currently saving my money from my job in order to move. This is a big step in my life that I am very excited about. Not only will I be going to a school where I’ll get to do what I love all day, but my boyfriend is coming with me.
My interests aren’t just limited to art, however. When it gets warm outside I love to play tennis whenever I get the chance. I played tennis in high school and I still enjoy playing today even though it’s hard sometimes to find a good partner. I also take great pride in my taste in music. I have a weird talent of being able to recite lyrics to every song that comes on the radio even after listening to it only once. My IPod is my best friend on the trips in between Ligonier, Syracuse, Warsaw, and Nappanee, which is a typical driving schedule for me on any given day. I’m also like every other teenager: I love to hang out with my friends in coffee shops (specifically Downtown Grounds in Syracuse), go to the movies, talk on my cell phone, listen to music, and generally being lazy whenever I can.
It wasn’t an epic biography, but hopefully you have some insight into my life in general including my interests, my family, and my goals. I look forward to reading everyone’s writing and maybe I’ll be able to give you guys something interesting to read as well.