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May 27, 2011 11:29 AM   Subscribe

Elizabeth Eckford. Paul Cole. Lt. Colonel Robert L. Stirm. Juan Romero. The unfamiliar names have one thing in common: because of a split second in time with a camera pointing towards them, they will always be remembered as “the person in that photograph.” This list includes 10 such individuals, and how a single picture can change some people’s lives. [NSFW for one photo]
posted by bayani (24 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite

 
Surprised not to see Mary Vecchio.
posted by Trurl at 11:34 AM on May 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've never seen that streaking photo, it's awesome--a whole story with multiple characters in one image.
posted by skewed at 11:57 AM on May 27, 2011


Surprised not to see Mary Vecchio.

Didn't recognize the name, but I knew what the photo was going to be before I clicked your link.
posted by benito.strauss at 12:03 PM on May 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


Kim Phuc's biography is called "The Girl in the Picture".
posted by secondhand pho at 12:07 PM on May 27, 2011


My father-in-law was the head of the journalism department at Kent State when that picture was taken, Trurl. He said it was really tough to report on the Kent State shootings, because of course everyone involved was in shock, and also no one could agree on the sequence of events that led to it.
posted by misha at 12:10 PM on May 27, 2011


Being from the greater Boston area and of a certain age, I immediately thought of this photo and the people in it.
posted by rmd1023 at 12:14 PM on May 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


I love this. I wish there were more. The context and after-life of these photos really makes you see them in a new way, with a deeper understanding and emotional connection...they're neither static nor past. Thank you.
posted by iamkimiam at 12:18 PM on May 27, 2011 [4 favorites]


it was really tough to report on the Kent State shootings, because of course everyone involved was in shock, and also no one could agree on the sequence of events that led to it.

Yeah, hard to figure out what happened. Oh, right, except Ohio Governor Jim Rhodes, the day before shooting, made a speech about the protesters:
They're worse than the Brownshirts, and the Communist element, and also the Night Riders, and the vigilantes. They're the worst type of people that we harbor in America.
posted by orthogonality at 12:21 PM on May 27, 2011


I had no idea the flows-in-the-gun guy became Hibiscus. That's a wonderful connection.
posted by feckless at 12:27 PM on May 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


rmd1023: Being from the greater Boston area and of a certain age, I immediately thought of this photo and the people in it.

There's a book about that photo.
posted by AzraelBrown at 12:30 PM on May 27, 2011


speaking of "the person in that photograph", i've always wanted to see a montage of me aging in the background of other people's photograph's that i've made unknowing cameos in.
posted by nathancaswell at 12:30 PM on May 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


I knew that the NSFW would probably be for Kim Phúc before I clicked the link. I did a GIS for a "where are they now" pic, and found out that the Wikipedia article has other pictures of her from that awful day, in color, from film footage. Here's a more recent picture that is just heart-rendering.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:30 PM on May 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


-rending, rather.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:31 PM on May 27, 2011


Best of the web. Interesting (some sad, some moving, some both) stories behind these shots.
posted by pointystick at 12:37 PM on May 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


This was very interesting, bayani - I love hearing the stories behind the photos, and even more so when the story has the perspective of time.

Another good resource for more in this genre is the excellent blog Iconic Photos.
posted by madamjujujive at 12:41 PM on May 27, 2011 [6 favorites]


[A couple comments removed. It's a big complicated overlapping Internet; please do not hector people about presumed "via" snubs.]
posted by cortex at 1:02 PM on May 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


There's enough history of notable photographs, now, that it becomes a wonderful framework of ways to look at how things have changed and evolved. I'd love to see a regular feature from some news site that periodically looks at some photo like this.
posted by rmd1023 at 1:28 PM on May 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


A picture is often indeed worth a thousand words, and yet the Stirm "Burst of Joy" story becomes an almost entirely different set of words once the footnote of what had just happened and what was soon to come is added. I've seen that photo many times before, but I'll certainly never look at it the same way again!
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 2:28 PM on May 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


That was cool. "The guy in the photo" for me was always James Leavelle, the dude in the light suit in this picture.
posted by marxchivist at 4:47 PM on May 27, 2011


Dangit, madamjujujive, I have been stuck on that Iconic Photos for the last hour...
posted by Xoebe at 5:29 PM on May 27, 2011


Wow, thanks for posting.

I didn't know Hibiscus was the guy putting the flower in the gun. The Cockettes were wonderful, check out the movie about them.
posted by mareli at 8:00 PM on May 27, 2011


the Stirm "Burst of Joy" story becomes an almost entirely different set of words once the footnote of what had just happened and what was soon to come is added

While Stirm was enduring "gunshot wounds, torture, illness, starvation and despair in North Vietnamese prison camps" for five-and-a-half years, his wife was collecting his paycheck to the tune of $136,000 and cheating on him with other men, and in the divorce she got their house and car, child support (even though she remarried within a year), and 40% of his pension? What the fuck?
posted by kirkaracha at 9:38 PM on May 27, 2011 [4 favorites]


This piece has the same info on the "Burst of Joy" photo, but there are are few other iconic photographs with accompanying updates as well.
posted by Oriole Adams at 12:38 AM on May 28, 2011


Will Counts, who took the photo of Elizabeth Eckford, was one of my journalism professors at IU.

Very cool link.
posted by SisterHavana at 3:33 PM on May 28, 2011


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