Anne Darling Photography

Toni Frissell (1907-1988)

Toni Frissell is included in my list of famous women photographers but nontheless she still deserves to be better known for her sheer diversity and prolific output which I hope you will find conveyed through the selection of images I have made for this page.She was a famous fashion photographer who worked for Vogue and Harper's Bazaar.

Her fashion photography broke new ground as she created images of women that were active, often outdoors rather than in the studio, and employing unusual angles.

fashion model underwater in dolphin tank
Fashion model underwater in dolphin tank, Marineland, Florida

However, Frissell found fashion photography limiting and wanted to proved that she could do 'real' reporting jobs so she volunteered for the American Red Cross in 1941 and actively sought out war assignments at home and abroad although her family were not always happy about it.

fashion model dovima
Fashion model Dovima wearing bikini, lying on platform near water, Montego Bay, Jamaica

The diversity of her work didn't end there though. Other topics of abiding interest included children, families, people eating and drinking, well-known people, and members of American and British upper classes.

battersea incident 1945
Battersea incident, England, January 1945 - girl among the ruins, British flag overhead. Corresponds to V2 rocket bombing of Battersea, in London, of 27 January 1945: 17 people killed, 20 houses destroyed, dozens more houses damaged

One of her most well-known images is her 'Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida' (1947) shot which was used for several album covers including Undercurrent by Bill Evans and Jim Hall. Three books included her photographs as illustrations: "Mother Goose ," "A Childs' Garden of Verses " and "The Happy Island".

rua medieval de alfama
Rua Medieval de Alfama

She was always interested in sport and was the first women to become a member of the staff of Sports Illustrated. Her work was selected for the Baltimore Museum of Art exhibition "Man in Sport" (1968), the only woman selected to exhibit.

weeki wachee spring
Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida

Her portraits of famous people such as Winston Churchill, Eleanor Roosevelt and Jacqueline Kennedy are also famous.

Jacqueline Kennedy Wedding Throwing Bouquet
Jacqueline Kennedy at her 1953 wedding, about to throw her bouquet


eleanor roosevelt
Eleanor Roosevelt talking with woman machinist during her goodwill tour of Great Britain

In 1970, Toni Frissell donated to the Library of Congress a huge collection of her photographic work covering a distinguished career of nearly forty years. The collection includes 42,000 colour transparencies, 25,000 prints, and 270,000 black-and-white negatives, however, only a few of Frissell's images have been digitized. Hopefully there will be more digitized in the near future as the photographs on this page clearly demonstrate great talent. Likewise, it is difficult to find books by Toni Frissell as most of them are out of print. However, it is still possible to find second-hand copies at reasonable prices. Follow the link to find out more.

Nuns gathering clams
Nuns clamming on Long Island




Top of Page

This site is under construction! Major changes are taking place - apologies for any inconsistencies which I hope will all be sorted very soon. Thanks for your patience.



Improve Your Composition

cover of the art of photographic composition ebook

Be More Creative

cover of the creative guide to photography ebook