Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.

The Kiss, By Alfred Eisenstaedt

It is V-J Day, August 14th, 1945, and as part of the celebration in Times Square, New York, a sailor kisses a woman dressed in white who he doesn’t know. The image was captured by Alfred Eisenstaedt and became an iconic photo on the cover of Life Magazine:

© Alfred Eisenstaedt

© Alfred Eisenstaedt

At first the two kissers were unknown and over the years there have been several people who have claimed to be the iconic couple… the end though, it is generally agreed upon that they are George Mendonsa and Greta Zimmer Friedman (though this is still contested).

I came across an article I thought I would share that the sailor, George Mendonsa has passed away at age 95. The article is an interesting one, as is this one from Wikepedia that also talks about the other people who have claimed to be the couple in the photo.

Fan Ho

Ever hear of the photographer Fan Ho? Neither had I! But when I discovered his work I was simply blown away. Turns out that I had seen and recognized some of his images, but I had never known who took them. Take this one for example:

Approaching Shadow (1954)    © Fan Ho

Approaching Shadow (1954)    © Fan Ho


His use of light and shadow, framing, high key, contrast, and the 'decisive moment' is truly amazing. It made me wonder how I had not heard of him or his work before this. It is always a pleasure to discover an artist who you hadn't heard of and whose work pulls you in and makes you see things in a new way.

Unfortunately, Fan Ho was one of many artists and performers who passed on in 2016.

Here is a video (made, as will become apparent, before his death) that reviews some of his work:

Recently a couple of books of his work have been reissued and I am looking forward to receiving my copies. They can be found here.