Thursday, July 30, 2009

Pixel People

Englishman Arthur Mole and American counterpart John Thomas took these incredible pictures of thousands of soldiers returning to America after World War I forming icons of American history.

The pair were commissioned by the US government to take the photographs in camps across the US to raise morale among the troops and raise money by selling the shots to the public.

Human Statue of Liberty: 18,000 officers and men – just 17 at the base but, half a mile away at the top, there are 12,000 in the torch alone (circa 1918)

The Human American Eagle: 12,500 officers, nurses and men at Camp Gordon, Atlanta, Georgia (1918)

The Living Uncle Sam: 19,000 officers and men at Camp Lee, Virginia (13 January 1919)

Living Emblem of the United States Marines (circa 1919)

Later photo by Eugene Omar Goldbeck, Indoctrination Division, Air Training Command, Lackland Air Base, San Antonio, Texas (19 July 1947)

Unbelievable. As was the technique: in order to combat the obvious problem of perspective in getting so many soldiers in the picture, Mole would actually draw an outline on the lens and then direct the troops to place flags in certain positions while he looked through the camera.

More can be seen at the Hammer Gallery site.

1 comment:

  1. Those photos are amazing - I've never heard of them nor seen them before.


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