Vivian Maier ... Nanny or Master Photographer?

Chicago nanny Vivian Maier, whose gritty street photography became a sensation and the subject of an Oscar-nominated documentary only after she died, led to early depictions of her as a camera-wielding Mary Poppins who may not have fully grasped nor cultivated her raw talent.

But new research reveals the French-speaking Maier as obsessive about honing her craft starting in 1950. Within years, the self-taught Maier had so mastered photography she often took just one shot to capture streetscape images heralded by critics more than five decades later.

See her work here, what do you think?


WOW! She was to street photography what Norman Rockwell was to painter and illustrator.
I am ashamed to say I never heard of her before (of if I did I had forgotten).

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Thank you Don!
I have never heard her name…
Great black & white photography! I think the 50s and 60s were good decades for B&W. New things and thinking arriving - old still there.

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I think that she was so special … Maier was to street photography as Ansel Adams was to landscape photography. Simply put Maier and Adams were grand masters of their craft.

And you can watch it on Netflix - it’s a wonderful fascinating documentary.

Of course, she did everything with film, and she was obsessed with keeping every negative (that’s part of her story and how she was later discovered), and it makes me wonder how she would have coped with the digital world.

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Rockwell would photograph arranged scenes as ‘sketches’ that he would use as the basis for his paintings/illustrations.

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Great work on her website …thanks.

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Thanks for introducing her to me, great photos and fascinating story!


Ditto… thanks for the link.

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