In early 1950, John Godfrey Morris, editor of the Ladies’ Home Journal, wanted to change the studio poses of its cover photographs to reflect a more liberated postwar woman. He invited photographers to submit ideas and promised $2,000 for each shot chosen, plus $500 for the model.
Ruth Orkin, the daughter of a silent film actor, was then 29. She had been making her way as a photographer in New York ever since she had cycled to the city in an epic two-wheel road trip from Los Angeles 12 years earlier, taking pictures as she went. She knew