W. Eugene Smith’s ‘Country Doctor,’ 1948

W. Eugene Smith’s ‘Country Doctor,’ 1948

Walk to Paradise Garden Art Poster Print by W. Eugene Smith
Walk to Paradise Garden Art Poster Print by W. Eugene Smith

While I was doing a short stint in photography school, W. Eugene Smith quickly became an idol. I studied his photographs, tried to model his work. I was not successful, but I remain awed by the depth of his eye and how seriously he took his craft.

Smith’s ‘Country Doctor’ photo essay in 1948 remains a favorite. Nice to see LIFE reproducing it though the prints don’t look that great–very high contrast and muddy compared to what I remember. Odd, since Smith was obsessive about his prints, often spending days refining a single image.

To see a great collection of Eugene Smith’s images, take a look at the Life & Magnum websites:

The “Walk to Paradise Garden” poster image was the first photograph Smith created after recovering from life-threatening injuries he suffered during WWII. The children in the picture are Smith’s.

After witnessing so much death and suffering, he consciously chose a subject full of life and hope.

Get in! No time to explain!

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