All about photo.com: photo contests, photography exhibitions, galleries, photographers, books, schools and venues.
Esther Bubley
Photo by John Vachon
Esther Bubley
Esther Bubley

Esther Bubley

Country: United States
Birth: 1921 | Death: 1998

Esther Bubley was an American photographer who specialized in expressive photos of ordinary people in their everyday life. She worked for several agencies of the American government and her work was also featured in multiple news and photographic magazines.

Bubley was born in Phillips, Wisconsin, the fourth of five children of Russian Jewish immigrants Louis and Ida Bubley. In 1936, while Esther was a senior at Central High School in Superior, Wisconsin, the photo magazine Life first hit the newsstands. Inspired by the magazine, and particularly by the pictures of the Great Depression produced by the Farm Security Administration, she developed a passion for photojournalism and documentary photography. As editor-in-chief of the yearbook, she sought to emulate the style of Life. After high school, Bubley spent two years at Superior State Teachers College (now the University of Wisconsin–Superior) before enrolling in the one-year photography program at the Minneapolis School of Art (now the Minneapolis College of Art and Design).

After college in 1941, Bubley moved to Washington, D.C. seeking work as a photographer. Failing to find a job in Washington, Bubley moved to New York City. During the 1941 Christmas season, she landed a position at Vogue in New York, but she didn't like the work. Early in 1942, she returned to Washington when she was offered a job as a microfilmer for the National Archives and Records Administration.

In the fall of 1942, Roy Stryker hired her as a darkroom assistant at the Office of War Information (OWI), where his photographic unit had recently been transferred from the Farm Security Administration. With the encouragement of Stryker, and some of the more senior photographers, she moved to take pictures for the OWI historical section, documenting life on the home front during the war. Her most challenging assignment was a noted series on the bus system in the Midwest and South.

In late 1943, when Stryker left the OWI to work on a public relations project for the Standard Oil Company (New Jersey), she accompanied him, along with other photographers, including Gordon Parks and John Vachon. The Bus Story series she produced for Standard Oil, a reprise of her earlier Bus Story for the OWI, earned the award for Best Picture Sequence in the Encyclopædia Britannica/University of Missouri School of Journalism "News Pictures of the Year" in 1948. During this period, she was briefly married to Edwin Locke, Stryker's administrative chief, but they soon divorced.

By 1947, Bubley was expanding her horizons beyond Stryker and Standard Oil. She began working for the Children's Bureau, a federal child welfare agency. Over the next several years, she contributed thousands of images to their files, and her work appeared on more than thirty covers of their journal The Child.

In 1949, Bubley's photo essay on mental illness for the Ladies' Home Journal was given the first place award for a feature in the Encyclopædia Britannica/University of Missouri School of Journalism contest, winning Bubley a second set of the Encyclopedia. She continued working for the Ladies' Home Journal, producing a dozen photo stories for their celebrated series "How America Lives," which ran intermittently between 1948 and 1960.

In 1951, Bubley began to freelance for Life, eventually contributing 40 photo stories, including two cover stories. Bubley was one of the first women to successfully support herself by working as a freelance photographer for major magazines.

In 1951, she also produced a series on the Pittsburgh Children's Hospital for Stryker, who was then establishing the Pittsburgh Photographic Library. Edward Steichen, Directory of Photography at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), used 13 prints from this series in the 1952 exhibition Diogenese with a Camera. He also mounted and displayed her contact sheets to show how she used every frame. This series led to medical themes becoming a major part of her portfolio. In 1953, she was hired by UNICEF and the French government to travel to Morocco to photograph a program to treat trachoma, an infectious disease that causes blindness. Bubley entered a photo from this assignment in the international division of a contest sponsored by Photography magazine in 1954. She became the first woman to win first place, and she received a trophy depicting a male photographer.

In 1955, Steichen included her work in his monumental The Family of Man exhibition. A year later, Pepsi-Cola International hired Bubley to cover Latin America for their company magazine Panorama. In the mid-1960s, Pan American World Airways sent her around the world twice to make images for their corporate photographic library. In the late 1960s, Bubley reduced her workload as sales of photographic magazines declined, and she wearied off the grueling travel schedule. She spent more time at home in New York City where she pursued projects of personal interest, producing two children's books about animals and a book featuring macro photography of plants.

A devoted animal lover, she spent her mornings in Central Park walking her dog, taking photographs, and making notes that she hoped to turn into a book about the park. In 1991 the Minneapolis College of Art and Design awarded Bubley an honorary doctorate. She died in New York City, of cancer, on March 16, 1998.

In 2001 a retrospective exhibition of Bubley's work appeared at the UBS Art Gallery in New York City. In 2005 Aperture Foundation published a monograph about Bubley, Esther Bubley: On Assignment by photographic historian Bonnie Yochelson with Tracy A. Schmid, archivist for the Bubley Estate. In 2010, the Library of Congress published the monograph Fields of Vision: The Photographs of Esther Bubley.

Source: Wikipedia


 

Esther Bubley's Video

Selected Books

Inspiring Portfolios

Call for Entries
AAP Magazine #38 Women
Publish your work in AAP Magazine and win $1,000 Cash Prizes
 
Stay up-to-date  with call for entries, deadlines and other news about exhibitions, galleries, publications, & special events.

More Great Photographers To Discover

Monica Denevan
United States
1964
Monica Denevan studied photography at San Francisco State University. Her ongoing series, "Songs of the River: Portraits from Burma," began in 2000. Since then, she has returned to many of the same small villages in Burma/Myanmar, making intimate photographs of fishermen and their families in the spare and graphic setting of the Irrawaddy River. She travels with a medium format film camera, one lens, and bags of film, working with natural light and making composed images. Once home, she makes photographic prints in her traditional darkroom. Denevan's photographs have been exhibited internationally including solo shows at Scott Nichols Gallery (Sonoma, CA), Duncan Miller Gallery (Santa Monica, CA), Tao Gallery (Hong Kong) and Serindia Gallery Annex (Bangkok.) In 2020, she was one of 25 artists included in Photo-Eye Gallery's (Santa Fe, NM) first-ever juried exhibition. Her work is currently displayed on The Strand Cruise ship in Burma/Myanmar. She was a Photolucida Critical Mass Top 50 finalist in 2019 and 2012. In 2016, ten of Denevan's images were published in a book of Lao photographs published by Nazraeli Press and Friends Without A Border in NY. In addition, her photographs have been published in ZYZZYVA, LensWork, SHOTS, and Bangkok Airways Inflight Magazine among others. She is the All About Photo 2020 Photographer of the Year award recipient. Monica Denevan is represented by Scott Nichols Gallery. She lives and works in San Francisco. Statement In my ongoing series "Songs of the River: Portraits from Burma," I make portraits of fishermen and their families by the Irrawaddy River. Burma (Myanmar) has a long troubled history, which continues into the present and now receives much more international notice and condemnation since my first trip in 2000. However, little has changed in the quiet villages I often visit. Generations of families live together in thatched roofed huts built on stilts. Women wash clothes in the river. Girls collect river water in large plastic containers that they balance on their heads. Men and boys are often out all night fishing. In the evening, children play, sing, bathe, and joke around at the river's edge. The sounds echo over the water. When in the villages, I am most interested in making portraits of the people I spend my time with, some of whom I have photographed since I first visited the country. I am grateful to be allowed briefly into their lives. The nearby area is stark, minimal, and ever changing, and I use that environment in my photographs. The landscape becomes another subject, another portrait within the picture. As families grow, I incorporate new people into my images, combining the spare, external world with the physicality of the individual. To return to the same place annually and find a new way to see it or to look for what is different is a daily adventure that I enjoy.
Rajan Dosaj
United States
1958
Born and raised in the United States, I spent nearly 20 years in the theater world, first as a dancer and singer in Broadway musicals and later as an actor and director. Upon my retirement from theater, I settled into the business world but it wouldn't be long before I was in need of a creative outlet and the Sebastiao Salgado documentary, The Salt of the Earth, rekindled my brief high school interest in photography. Soon, the books of Alec Soth, Nancy Rexroth, Sally Mann, Joshua Jackson, and many more were on my selves and with a newly purchased camera in hand, I started out on my latest adventure. Naturally, I started with dance portraits and found it incredibly exciting and fulfilling but soon I ventured into other genres to improve my work. Whether it was wildlife, street, architecture, portrait, or fine art photography, I was either taking a class or teaching myself about the genre in order to become a better photographer. In my short time behind the camera, I have been fortunate enough to have some of my images appear in galleries across the country, including Photo Place Gallery, A Smith Gallery, Praxis Gallery, Black Box Gallery, SE Center for Photography, and the Decode Gallery. With my background in theater, I know that photography can be a frustrating art form where most of the time I end up kicking myself for the mistakes that I continuously make over and over. But every once in a while, those rare moments come along when my eyes through a camera are able to see and capture an extraordinary moment.
Leo Rubinfien
United States
1953
Leo Rubinfien, born in Chicago, Illinois, is a photographer and essayist from the United States. He currently resides and works in New York City. Rubinfien rose to popularity in the 1970s as a member of a group of artist-photographers who experimented with new color processes and materials. In 1981, Leo Rubinfien had his first one-person exhibition at Castelli Graphics in New York, and he has since had solo exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Seattle Art Museum, the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo, and the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University. He is the author of two photobooks, A Map of the East (Godine, Thames & Hudson, Toshi Shuppan, 1992) and Wounded Cities. Leo Rubinfien is also a prolific writer, having produced numerous extensive essays on famous twentieth-century photographers. He contributed a memoir, Colors of Daylight, to Starburst: Color Photography in America, 1970-1980 (Kevin Moore, Cincinnati Art Museum / Hatje Caantz 2010), and wrote Wounded Cities, a long personal and historical essay about the September 11th, 2001 attacks and the years that followed. He was the Guest Co-curator of Shomei Tomatsu's retrospective at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art from 2001 to 2004, and he is the co-author of Shomei Tomatsu / Skin of the Nation (Yale University Press, 2004). Since 2010, he has served as Guest Curator for the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art's exhibition of Garry Winogrand's work, which will embark on a world tour in 2013. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Seattle Art Museum, the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, the Yale University Art Gallery, the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University, and the Fogg Museum have all acquired Rubinfien's work. Leo Rubinfien has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, Japan Foundation, Asian Cultural Council, and New York University's International Center for Advanced Studies, and he was given the Gold Prize at the 5th Lianzhou International Photography Festival in 2009.
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman was born and raised in Detroit, where his father was a traveling salesman and his mother was a ceramic artist. He graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in English Literature. During a fifteen-year newspaper career, Tom was a frequent winner of distinctions from the National Press Photographer’s Association, as well as being named California Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 1995 and Los Angeles Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 1996. As a magazine freelancer, Tom’s pictures have been published regularly in Time, People, Business Week, Barrons, Smithsonian and National Geographic Traveler, and have also appeared in US News & World Report, Brandweek, Sunset, Harper’s and Travel Holiday. Tom has shot covers for Chief Executive, People, Priority, Biz Tech, Acoustic Guitar, Private Clubs, Time, Investment Advisor, Diverse and Library Journal. Tom teaches “The Photographer’s Eye” at the Julia Dean Photo Workshops, and “Vision and Style” at the New York Film Academy, both in Hollywood. Tom exhibited “Social Studies”, a series of street photographs, widely in Southern California. He’s currently finishing Sunshine & Noir, a book-length collection of black-and-white “urban landscapes” made in the neighborhoods of Los Angeles. Sunshine & Noir had it’s solo debut at the Afterimage Gallery in Dallas in April, 2006. Subsequent solo exhibitions include: the Robin Rice Gallery in New York in November 2008, the Blue Sky Gallery in Portland, OR, in October 2009, the Xianshwan Photo Festival in Inner Mongolia, China, in 2010 and California State, Chico, in 2011. In the summer of 2012, a dozen pictures from Sunshine & Noir were featured in the “Photo Menage” exhibiton at the St. Petersburg Mueum of Art, in Russia, and ten prints will be shown during the RAYKO Gallery’s annual Plastic Camera Show in San Francisco in March, 2013, where Tom will be the Featured Artist. Also in early 2013, Tom will mount his first LA solo show, at the Duncan Miller Gallery, and his second solo show at the Robin Rice Gallery in New York City,
Antonin Kratochvil
Czech Republic/United States
1947
Antonin is a founder of the VII photo agency. As photojournalists go, Antonin Kratochvil has sunk his teeth into his fair share of upheaval and human catastrophes whilst going about his documentation of the time in which he lives. As people go, Kratochvil's own refugee life has been much in the way the same as what he has rendered on film. Kratochvil's unique style of photography is the product of personal experience, intimate conditioning and not privileged voyeurism. Over the years his fluid and unconventional work has been sought by numerous publications stretching across widely differing interests. From shooting Mongolia's street children for the magazine published by the Museum of Natural History to a portrait session with David Bowie for Detour, from covering the war in Iraq for Fortune Magazine to shooting Deborah Harry for a national advertising campaign for the American Civil Liberties Union, Kratochvil's ability to see through and into his subjects and show immutable truth has made his pictures not facsimiles but uncensored visions. And yet, what set his kind apart from the many is his consistency and struggle to carry on. For Kratochvil this fact comes in the form of his numerous awards, grants and honorable mentions dating back to 1975. The latest of these are his two, first place prizes at the 2002 World Press Photo Awards in the categories of general news and nature and the environment. The next is the 2004 grant from Aperture publishing for Kratochvil's study on the fractious relationship between American civil liberties and the newly formed Homeland Security since the World Trade Center bombings. In addition, Kratochvil's fifth book Vanishing was presented in April 2005 and marks another significant milestone for the craft to which he belongs. Vanishing represents a collection of natural and human phenomena that on the verge of extinction. What makes this book so innovative is the twenty years it has taken to produce, making it not only historical from the onset, but a labor of love and a commitment to one man's conscience.
Bruce Mozert
United States
1916 | † 2015
Robert Bruce Moser (November 24, 1916 – October 14, 2015), known as Bruce Mozert, was an American photographer. He was considered to be a pioneer of underwater photography and his images of Silver Springs, Florida, were widely circulated during the early and mid 20th century. Mozert was born in Newark, Ohio, to Fred and Jessie Moser. He was the youngest of three children and the only son. The family moved to a farm in Scranton, Pennsylvania, while he was still young, where his father became the superintendent of the Scranton Stove Works. He graduated high school and took a job as a truck driver that brought coal to New Jersey, but quickly decided he was "too sensitive to be a truck driver" and moved to New York City to live with his sister, the well-known model and pin-up artist Zoë Mozert. Through Zoë, Bruce met Victor de Palma, a lead photographer for Life magazine, who hired him as a film developer and helped him into the field. He joined the Freelance Photographers Guild and worked for Pic. In 1938, while he was on an assignment to photograph women's shoes in Miami, Florida, Mozert heard about the filming of one of Johnny Weissmuller's Tarzan movies in Silver Springs. He traveled to meet the cast and ended up staying in Ocala, becoming the official photographer of Silver Springs for the next 45 years. He served in the U.S. Army Air Forces during part of World War II and there learned aerial photography. Mozert took advantage of the extremely clear water of Silver Springs by taking underwater photographs with specially constructed waterproof camera housings. He built his first such housing in the early 1940s. The novelty and clarity of his underwater photographs were major advertisements for Silver Springs and the distribution of the photos over wire services helped the attraction bring in visitors from 1940 to 1970. Most of his photographs feature submerged women doing ordinary tasks that would be done on land, such as cooking, reading newspapers and mowing lawns. Most of the women were actually employees of Silver Springs and one of his most frequently shot models, Ginger Stanley, was an underwater stunt double for Creature from the Black Lagoon. Physical tricks were often used to make the underwater scenes appear more realistic. He also took underwater movie stills for the many productions filmed in Silver Springs. Above the water, he took pictures of visitors going on glass bottom boat tours, developed the film while they were on the tour, and then had the photos ready to sell to visitors when they returned. Mozert spent his last years working out of his studio in Ocala, Florida, where he digitized film. His pictures have been featured in publications such as Huffington Post, National Geographic, Life, Look, Pic and Smithsonian Magazine. Mozert died at his home in Ocala on October 14, 2015 at the age of 98. Source: Wikipedia
Stefano Galli
Italy
1981
Stefano Galli is an Italian photographer born in 1981. After graduating at the University of Turin, with a BA in cinema, he moved to Copenhagen, Denmark, where he worked with director Lars Von Trier. During these years he attended Fatamorgana, The Danish School of Art & Documentary Photography. Fascinated with traveling and the discovery of new environments, Galli is currently working on a new series that belong to a trilogy started with 'Cars' and followed by '80 Skies'. He recently terminated a non-narrative documentary-film, based on the stories of random people met along a journey through the USA. Galli exclusively works on a traditional analog way, both in his motion and still project. Currently based in Los Angeles. About '80 skies'Gazes at the sky. The beauty and power of pure light entering the camera. A project that recalls Claude Monet’s study of the influence of light on objects. Stefano Galli brings his own light studies to the extreme, focusing on the sky and its myriad variations. In “80 SKIES”, the protagonists of Galli’s frames are airplanes or - better said - the small shapes that fly over our heads daily. Because of their height in the sky and the sunlight by which they are surrounded, the shapes Galli captures become something entirely different than just giant devices that move hundreds of human beings. In many cases, the planes are insignificant elements when compared to the magnificence of the heavens. In fact, the eye of the viewer becomes lost in the contemplation of the colors, in the totality of the photographs; looking at these images, the impression of hearing the deafening noise or the usual imagery of the airplane is not perceived. Fascinated by movement and travel, Stefano Galli dedicates this project to the aircraft for the purpose of studying the sky. The result is a creative pictorial but also a tiring study that begins in the early hours of dawn and ends with the fall of the sun. Pushing 35mm negatives to the extreme through a 90mm lens, he lets the film be flooded by the infinite heavenly hue, the changing colors of the horizon sometimes grayish, or yellow and pink, the broad spectrum of colors that characterize the sky. The intensity of the light seems to struggle with the film speed, so the photographs are characterized by a thick grain that gives the picture a three-dimensional effect, as if it had been given a brushstroke.A photographic project that shows the endless variations of the light system in which we live. About 'Cars': Stefano Galli’s work documents his journey of crossing deserts, through forgotten villages, on remote and empty roads. In ‘Cars’ , geography is just as important as photography even if in his shots - distinctive sharp cuts - he leads away from the dusty streets and daily life. Galli conducts the imagination to an elsewhere where lines play with material and shape, where the tail lights and fenders are transformed into surreal and alien beings. Yet ‘Cars’ goes far beyond a mere figurative research, the work is conducted with rigor and awareness, typical of a geographer or an archivist. In fact, Stefano meticulously notates the physical location of the intersection shown in each photograph. Therefore, the project goes beyond the cult of the American car. Through this adventure, Galli tracks and defines - snap after snap - a cognitive path of the new continent. So there is an aspect that links these works to a deep investigation of American society and to aspects of decay and yet, mixed with a splendor that still dazzles. The essence of his idea lies not only in the aesthetics of the work, but also in his decision to show the layers of dust on the cars, the broken headlights and swollen wheels. In this series, a fascination with America remains. A fascination with all its vastness and complexity, which attracts and disturbs at the same time. Discover Stefano Galli's Interview
Advertisement
AAP Magazine #38: Women
April 2024 Online Solo Exhibition
AAP Magazine #38: Women

Latest Interviews

Orchestrating Light: Seth Dickerman Talks About his Passion for Photographic Printmaking
Seth Dickerman is a master manipulator of the wide spectrum of light densities that reflect off the surface of a photographic print and enter into our field of vision. His singular intent in making prints is to bring out the best an image has to offer, which means giving an image the ability to hold our attention, to engage us, and to allow us to discover something about an image that is meaningful and significant.
Exclusive Interview with Michel Haddi
Photographer and film director, Michel Haddi has photographed many high-profile celebrities while living in the USA including, Clint Eastwood, Martin Scorsese, David Bowie, Uma Thurman, Francis Ford Coppola, Cameron Diaz, Faye Dunaway, Nicholas Cage, Johnny Depp, Heath Ledger, Angelina Jolie, Janet Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, and many others. He also manages a publishing house, MHS publishing, which publishes his own books. Currently based in London we have asked him a few questions about his life and work
Exclusive Interview with Sebastien Sardi
In 2008, Swedish photographer Sebastian Sardi, inspired by an article exposing hidden mining-related incidents, embarked on a photography journey. Without formal training, he explored mines and ventured to India's Jharkhand state to document coal miners in Dhanbad, known as the "coal capital." His project, "Black Diamond," captured the lives of people, including men, women, and children, dedicated to coal extraction in grueling conditions.
Exclusive Interview with Debra Achen
Monterey-based photographer Debra Achen was born and raised near Pittsburgh, PA, where she developed a passion for both nature and art. She studied a variety of studio arts, including drawing, painting, and printmaking in addition to her training in traditional film and darkroom photography. Her project 'Folding and Mending' won the September 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked here a few questions about her life and work.
Exclusive Interview with Steve Hoffman
Steve Hoffman is a documentary photographer who has who spent the last dozen years working with and photographing the people that live the housing projects in Coney Island. He was the winner of the July and August 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked him a few questions about his life and work.
Exclusive Interview with Aya Okawa
Aya is passionate about exploring the natural world and protecting ecosystems and wild landsAll about Photo: Tell us about your first introduction to photography. What drew you into this world? Her project The Systems That Shape Us'won the February 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked her a few questions about her life and her work.
Exclusive Interview with Réhahn
Réhahn discusses his groundbreaking new photographic series ''Memories of Impressionism,'' his artistic journey during and after Covid, and how modernity can draw inspiration from the past. French photographer Réhahn's career started with a face. More specifically, the face of Madame Xong, an octogenarian with an ''ageless beauty'' and ''hidden smile'' that inspired the world. From there, his portraits and lifestyle photos were published all over the world, in pretty much every major magazine and media out there, including The New York Times, BBC, National Geographic and more. His work centered on people living ''outside of time'' with traditional jobs and skills that had been passed down through generations. This focus led to his Precious Heritage Project, the photographer's decade-long research project to document the more than 54 ethnicities currently living in Vietnam, along with their textile and craft traditions. The final collection is housed in The Precious Heritage Museum in Hoi An, Vietnam.
Exclusive Interview with Patrick Cariou
For more than 25 years, French photographer Patrick Cariou has traveled to places around the globe, documenting people living on the fringes of society. Whether photographing surfers, gypsies, Rastafarians or the rude boys of Kingston, Cariou celebrates those who meet the struggles of life with honor, dignity and joy. Bringing together works from his groundbreaking monographs including Surfers, Yes Rasta, Trenchtown Love and Gypsies, Patrick Cariou: Works 1985–2005 (published by Damiani) takes us on a scenic journey around the world, offering an intimate and captivating look at cultures that distance themselves from the blessings and curses of modernity.
Exclusive Interview with Niko J. Kallianiotis
Niko J. Kallianiotis' Athênai in Search of Home (published by Damiani) presents photos taken in and around Athens, the city in which he grew up. The images reflect the artist's eagerness to assimilate back into a home that feels at once foreign and familiar. Throughout the years the city and the surrounding territories have experienced their share of socio-economic struggles and topographic transformations that have altered its identity. The city of Athens in Kallianiotis' photographs is elliptically delineated as a vibrant environment that binds together luxury and social inequality. The photographer depicts a city in which the temporal and the spatial elements often clash with each other while conducting his research for a home that has changed over the years as much as he did.
Call for Entries
AAP Magazine #38 Women
Publish your work in AAP Magazine and win $1,000 Cash Prizes