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LCdr. Richard "Horace" Bristol
Richard Horace Bristol: (November 16, 1908– August 4, 1997) was a twentieth century American photographer, best known for his work in Life. His photos appeared in Time, Fortune, Sunset, and National Geographic magazines.
WWII Combat Photographer
Bristol was born in Whittier and raised in Santa Paula, California, and attended the Art Center of Los Angeles, originally majoring in architecture. In 1933, he moved to San Francisco to work in commercial photography, and met Ansel Adams, who lived near his studio. Through his friendship with Adams, he met Edward Weston, Imogen Cunningham, and other artists.
In 1936, Bristol became a part of Life's founding photographers, and in 1938, began to document migrant farmers in California's central valley with John Steinbeck, recording the Great Depression, photographs that would later be called the Grapes of Wrath collection.
In 1941, at the age of 33, Horace Bristol was recruited to the U.S. Naval Aviation Photographic Unit, as one of six photographers under the command of Captain Edward J. Steichen, documenting World War II in places such as South Africa, and Japan. Bristol helped to document the invasions of North Africa, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa.
He served as Lt. Commander until the end of World War II.
Following his documentation of World War II, Bristol settled in Tokyo, Japan, selling his photographs to magazines in Europe and the United States, and becoming the Asian correspondent to Fortune.
Fortune magazine sent him to Asia for a two-year assignment and he was stationed in Japan for the next 25 years covering Asia. He published several books, and established the East-West Photo Agency.
Bristol lived in Ojai, California, until his death in 1997 at the age of 89.
The Aviation Photographic Unit was a military unit unlike any other in World War II. Founded and led by legendary photographer Edward Steichen, the photographers in this unit gave Americans on the home front memorable and dramatic images of the people fighting the Navy's battles in the Pacific theater. Beginning with just half a dozen intrepid shutterbugs and expanding to ten battle-seasoned photographers, the unit covered everything from early aircraft raids to amphibious landings to the surrender in Tokyo Bay. With an estimated 14,000 images in the collection of the National Archives, the work of this talented photographic unit is historically significant not only as a visual record of the war, but also for its influence on generations of postwar photographers. Faces of War is a tribute to the vision of Edward Steichen, as well as the men who served under him, and most importantly to their subjects-the unsung heroes of the U.S. Navy. Steichen's unit included such well-known photographers as:
LCdr. Horace Bristol
Lt. Barrett Gallagher
LCdr. Charles Fenno Jacobs
Lt. Victor Jorgensen
LCdr. Charles Kerlee
LCdr. Dwight S. Long
Lt. Wayne Miller