This iconic image,titled DALI ATOMICUS, by Philip Halsman was shot at a time when photoshop was not available to the world yet. The Image shows Dali, a cat , water and a chair all suspended mid-air. It took Halsman and Dali 28 attempts to create the final image. For each shot,Halsman would count to four. The cats and the water would be thrown at the count of three while Dali himself would jump on the count of four. Halsman would take the shot and immediately go to his dark room and develop it to see what adjustments needed to be made in the next shot. Finally after 28 attempts,they managed to get a shot that was satisfactory to both and eventually became one of the most iconic images of their time.
Salvador Dali was a surrealist artist and the two began to collaborate in the late 1940s and this iconic image was perhaps the most famous result of this collaboration. Dali Atomicus was inspired by Dali’s own work Leda Atomica and can be seen in a corner of this photograph.
Philip Halsman photographed some of the most famous personalities of his time including Einstein, Martin Luther King and Marilyn Monroe.His photographs were sharply focused,closely cropped and showed a side of these personalities that was both playful and humorous.