Photographer Phil Stern, who was among World War II’s most famous chroniclers before turning his attention to Hollywood and the music industry, died over the weekend at age 95.
Phil Stern, an award-winning photographer who lugged his camera into combat during World War II and later became known for candid shots of Hollywood stars like Marlon Brando, has died. He was 95.
Stern died Saturday in Los Angeles after being hospitalized, said David Fahey, co-owner of the Fahey/Klein Gallery that displayed the photographer's work for decades. Stern, a longtime smoker, had emphysema, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Stern, who shot for Life, Look and other magazines, honed his skills as a war photographer during the 1943 Allied invasion of Sicily.
"His pictures of the invasion and its aftermath remain among the most outstanding documents in the annals of combat photography in any war, before or since," author and journalist Herbert Mitgang wrote in "Phil Stern: A Life's Work," a 2003 collection of Stern photos.
After the war, Stern gained fame for photos of icons like Marilyn Monroe, Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra in unguarded moments. Unlike the movie-studio portrait photographers whose images were idealized and airbrushed, Stern typically photographed stars candidly on the set, at home and at private gatherings.
Stern also shot many of the top jazz artists of the day, photos that wound up on album covers, as you can see in the slideshow.
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