Philippe Halsman? I love them.
A Life photographer with over 101 cover shots to his name, a regular contributor to LOOK and the Saturday Evening Post, Halsman was often commissioned to shoot the rich, famous and influential people of the 50's. During this time he had the wonderful idea of Jump! - once the official shoots ended he would ask the stars (no matter how famous or important) to jump. The resulting images (above) are brilliant and show the celebs in such a natural, relaxed way.
"Marilyn Monroe, Brigitte Bardot, Salvador Dali, Weegee, Jack Dempsey and even the Duke and Duchess of Windsor agreed to take a leap of faith. In that era of live television along with the popularity of the big glossy magazines, one’s image was not nearly as protected and shaped by handlers as it is today. There was a feeling of innocence, a desire for spontaneity, and Halsman, with his playful and charming personality, knew he had to get almost everyone to oblige his demand: JUMP!"
Halsman called the series, 'Jumpology!' and for the first time they are being exhibited at the Laurence Miller Gallery in New York (exhibition runs until 28 May 2010). For those that can't make it over to NY there was a book of the images (below) published in 1986 which is still available here and here.
Images copyright of the artist, taken from Laurence Miller Gallery.
Via The Photography Post and Notcot.