It’s times like this when I really really love my job. I mean, how many chances do you get at work to stage your own Philippe Halsman photo shoot (above)?
The photo at left of surrealist painter Salvador Dali and three cats, as if suspended in the air, is typical of Halsman’s stop-action jump pictures. He was famous for getting celebrities and other well known people such as Marilyn Monroe, Anthony Perkins, and Richard Nixon to leap into the air.
There’s a wonderful collection of his jump pictures in a book called nothing less than Jump Book (available on amazon.com; cover image at right).
In like manner, my colleagues and I (from left to right, top: Jon 1, Jon 2, Yours Truly, Greg, and Ben) leapt into the air for Photographer Danielle on a recent hot hot hot summer day. The directive—aside from jumping—was to wear a polo shirt or a Hawaiian shirt for the photo shoot, to help launch TFCB’s new fashion series Dressing a Nation.
I don’t own either type of shirt, so I went for the Hawaiian theme with my red print dress, pink flip- flops and matching pink guitar. And Jon 2 sported a cloth lei with his orange shirt, so we were close.
The now ubiquitous polo shirt was originally a French import from Rene Lacoste and Andre Gillier, who formed Lacoste in 1933. They specialized in polo shirts, which at the time, men wore to play tennis (left). By the twenty-first century, the shirt has become a basic feature of most men’s casual wardrobe.
Learn more about the polo shirt and other men’s fashions in The Little Black Dress and Zoot Suits: Depression and Wartime Fashions from the 1930s to the 1950s (cover at right) in the Dressing a Nation series. The five-volume series takes readers through the history of American fashion, from pre-colonial times through the postwar 1950s.
And don’t forget to check in next week for more from TFCB!
[photos: top, courtesy of Danielle Carnito; Dali Wikimedia Commons; Jump Book amazon.com; tennis players copyright Universal/TempSport/CORBIS; props courtesy of Martha Kranes]