Self Portrait by Diane Arbus

...In stark contrast to her own mother, Diane, to the best of her ability, was devoted to her children....

But to be both a full-time mother and a professional photographer — there was no model for that, and the situation required some heavy improvisation. Diane was scraping together a living through magazine work, and while Doon was fairly independent, Amy was still only 5. Diane would often leave her daughter with a friend for the day, or she’d take her along on her tamer assignments. Lubow describes one such instance when, working in Central Park, Diane didn’t notice that Amy had fallen into a pond until the girl reemerged on her own, soaked and coughing. He also quotes an entry in Diane’s appointment book around this time that sums up the surreal balance she was attempting to pull off: “Buy Amy’s birthday present, go to the morgue.”
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Media: photography