Eisie on Papa

Over at Life, Ben Cosgrove tells the story of how Alfred Eisenstadt went to Cuba to photograph Ernest Hemmingway … and it’s a harrowing tale.

“He was,” Eisenstaedt once said of Hemingway, “the most difficult person I ever photographed.” Coming from a man who was a professional photographer across seven decades — someone who photographed presidents, emperors, socially awkward scientists, testy athletes, egomaniac actors, insecure actresses and once, famously, a scowling and goblin-like Nazi minister of propaganda, Joseph Goebbels — coming from Eisenstaedt, that bald assertion about Hemingway is striking, and sadly revealing. And it’s especially sad in light of the effort that Eisenstaedt evidently put into trying to like Hemingway.

Love that they included some of Eisie’s contact sheets.

Mark E. Johnson

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