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Goodbye Gordon Parks (we can dig it)

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Some people, if they're lucky, get good at one thing. Like, say, photography; to be a photographer printed in Vogue and Life — that, in the 1940s and '50s, was excellence. Enough talent and vision for any one life. But for Gordon Parks, that was only the beginning.

Born the last of 15 kids in Kansas, he was a photographer, co-founder of Essence magazine, writer, composer and filmmaker. He wrote a book called The Learning Tree about growing up poor and black (its cover reads: A Novel From Life — now there's a lesson for James Frey). He also made a film of it in 1968, when the photo above was taken by Norman E. Tanis.

Then he made the movie about the black private dick that's a sex machine to all the chicks — SHAFT!

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On Tuesday, Gordon Parks died; the trailblazing photographer and filmmaker and musician and writer was 93.