By Mike Lander on
The quotation has been attributed to Oscar Wilde and Charles Caleb Colton as well as others. Did not the Romans learn from the Greeks in taking their Gods and renaming them? And so it goes. Inventions are very often improvements upon the work of earlier inventors. We are all influenced by the work of others. The point is that we are supposed to learn from others and create our own unique style.
I have argued that our contributions at DPI to the greater good have been influenced by the photographers of the Farm Security Administration in particular during the Great Depression. This is quite true. There have been other influences that we have mentioned from time to time such as connections to scenes from certain films and lyrics from songs. On occasion we have argued that a particular image seemed to be more like a painting than a photograph. Among the thousands of images that we have presented only a very few fit into this category. An artist whom we admire is Norman Rockwell. We are at odds with his methodology but not his subject matter. In particular, Rockwell posed adults with children showing a nurturing from the adult to the child. Rockwell created sympathy for his subjects, and I believe that our image “Daddy, There’s a Pebble in My Shoe“; Oregon c.1942 could have been the subject of a Rockwell painting.
There are several possible Rockwell paintings which appeared on the covers of the Saturday Evening Post that illustrate this connection between a caring adult and a child. We have selected “Doctor and the Doll” (1929) as representative of this category of Rockwell’s work. We see a connection between “Daddy, There’s a Pebble in My Shoe” and this body of Rockwell’s work.