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March 5, 2014

14 Wonderful Color Photos Capture Daily Life of New York City in the 1950s

Ruth Orkin (1921-1985) was a self-taught award-winning American photographer, photojournalist, and filmmaker, with ties to New York City and Hollywood. She is best known for her photograph An American Girl in Italy (1951), and has photographed many celebrities and personalities including Lauren Bacall, Doris Day, Ava Gardner, Tennessee Williams, Marlon Brando, and Alfred Hitchcock.

These were some of Ruth’s first 35-mm photographs shot with Kodachrome. By the early 1950s, magazines were beginning to use color photographs in more spreads. When the editor of Ladies’ Home Journal contacted Ruth in 1950 to say that they were looking for “undiscovered American beauties,” she responded that she had shot “exactly what he was looking for; I had not only photographed a beautiful girl who was not a model, but she was doing something that all his women readers could identify with.”



















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