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March 24, 2015

1919 Thomas Benton Hollyman, Famous Photographer Moved to Warrensburg

Getty Images - Thomas Hollyman Link
1929: Tom Benton Hollyman moved to Warrensburg with his father, the Rev. John Hollyman, and family.

NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 6: (R-L) Photographer Tom Hollyman, photographer Arnold Newman, photographer Slim Aarons and photo editor Frank Zachary attend the Slim Aarons Exhibition/Book Release Party at the Staley Wise Gallery November 6, 2003 in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Peyton/Getty Images)
Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Thomas Benton Hollyman, a leading magazine photographer who worked on the classic movie "Lord of the Flies," has died at 89. Hollyman died Saturday, November 14, 2009 in Austin, Texas according to his daughter. Graydon Carter, managing editor of Vanity Fair, included Hollyman in a roundup of "photographic greats." The son of a Presbyterian pastor, he was a staff photographer for the St. Louis Post Dispatch before serving in the Army Air Forces. In 1963, as a travel photographer, he was hired to direct photography for British director Peter Brook's movie "Lord of the Flies." Hollyman was president of the American Society of Magazine Photographers from 1969 to 1971. His daughter, Stephenie Hollyman, says a memorial service for Hollyman will be held at Manhattan's Saint Bartholomew's Church on Nov. 30.

Graydon Carter, managing editor of Vanity Fair, included Hollyman in his round-up of “ photographic greats” in his magazine’s Editor’s Letter, January 2005, titled “ The Shots Seen Around the World.” These were photographers he wrote, whose “ travels help form the patina of their characters and the grist for their tales.” Although Hollyman worked primarily as a photographer for most of his career, his quest for new challenges also took him to cinema. In 1963, working with the film-maker and British stage director Peter Brook, he served as director of photography for the big-screen version of Lord of the Flies, learning to operate a movie camera a short while before the film began production in Puerto Rico. Brook selected him as a total unknown.

Education & Starting Chance

The son of a Presbyterian pastor, Hollyman was born in Denver, Colorado on December 7, 1919, to a family who were descendants of Missouri and Texas settlers. He was a Sons of the American Revolution the family having originally settled in Jamestown, Virginia in 1644. After moving to Warrensburg, Missouri, in 1919, where his father became pastor of the Presbyterian Church,

First Presbyterian Church,
The first service in the new stone Gothic Revival Church
was held on October 9, 1910.

Hollyman began publishing a school paper in the sixth grade. Hollyman who said that he “always wanted to be journalist ,” learned to set type as a printer’s devil at the Standard Herald in exchange for lessons in news-writing. He also was the Bandmaster and an original member of Don Essig’s Novelty Music Show an experience he wrote about in an article for May 31, 1958, New Yorker titled” How Culture Came to Sand Springs, Oklahoma.” In high school as a senior, he worked his way to Europe on a German steamship, playing in a five-piece jazz band, the Varsity Club Orchestra. Upon arriving in Europe he bicycled 1400 miles from London to Edinburgh and back.
While attending college at Central Missouri State University, in Warrensburg, Missouri, he freelanced for The Daily Star-Journal and the St. Louis Post Dispatch, working with a Speed Graphic camera. On a fluke, he was asked by the Kansas City Journal to take a photograph of a brother and sister who were separated as children but got married while unaware of their kinship. The photo of the young woman weeping in her doorway , he later recalled, was his first published photograph, “smeared over the front page of the Journal, syndicated nationally and ending up in Life Magazine, made me wince at my shameful effort even though it launched my career.”

Hollyman graduated from Central Missouri State University in 1940 with a degree in English, economics and social studies. His interest in journalism then took him to the University of Missouri where he received a Master’s degree scholarship where he was one of the first two students to major in photojournalism.

His first job was with the Chicago Bureau of Acme Newspictures, the forerunner of the wire service photography division of the Associated Press. He later became a staff photographer for the St. Louis Post Dispatch, where he worked until World War II.
Air Force Intelligence

In 1941 Hollyman entered the Air Force and was stationed in the Pentagon to help set up a photo intelligence project. Among many other duties, he was assigned to be the official service photographer covering Franklin D. Roosvelt’s funeral in Washington. He rode with the press corps on the president’s funeral train which slowly carried Roosevelt’s body overnight, to his interment in Hyde Park, NY. Hollyman served as officer in charge of Yank Magazine in Okinawa, and helped set up Yank Magazine and Stars and Stripes newspaper in Tokyo. His colleagues included Herblock, the political cartoonist, and writers John Hersey, Roger Angell, and Andy Rooney, among others. Hollyman also photographed Nagasaki after it was bombed by the United States.
Post War

At war’s end after being demobilized as a captain, Hollyman became the first staff photographer for Holiday Magazine, a position he held for several years, producing some 1000 pages of travel journalism in Europe and the U.S. He worked for the legendary director Frank Zachery who became a lifelong friend. While working at Holiday in 1946, Hollyman married fashion photographer, Jean Burnes, and the two of them became a traveling photographic team, regarded in journalistic circles as a dashing team as they lived out of their suitcases. They were among the first to shoot small-format color photography for magazines. He became Holiday's Photo editor.

In his 2004 New Yorker article, “ La Vie En Rose,” Roger Angell describes taking a trip in the late 1940s on board the “ slow poke ocean liner De Grass- the only French Line vessel as yet restored to the Atlantic run after the war,” with the Holiday photographic team as fellow passengers. Both were off to Europe for another Holiday assignment.

Of the opportunity to work during this halcyon era, Roger Angell wrote in The New Yorker that journalists such as he and the Hollymans “were lucky…” but that,

“ only one anecdote continues to work. Late one night aboard the De Grasse , Evelyn is dancing with our friend Tom Hollyman, a Holiday photographer, and Jean Hollyman with a young purser. At our tiny table, with its crowded champagne glasses and triangular G.C. T. ashtrays, I am in deep converse with a fellow passenger, Alfonso Bedoya, a Mexican movie actor who was such a hit last year as the bandito chief in the “ Treasure of the Sierra Madre.” Honeymoon Assignment

The Hollymans’ first joint assignment for Holiday Magazine came during their honeymoon in 1946, when they were sent to Bermuda. The new bride found herself stringing together a hard-wire cable necklace of some 40 flashbulbs to light up a seaside cavern for which the exposure was calculated manually. “ We never worked so hard in our lives, “ Ms. Hollyman later told the Bridgeport Post. “ We did thirty pages of pictures in two weeks flat.” After this first Holiday assignment the couple went on to work for the magazine for the next five years on an assignments in Europe, Latin America and the U.S.

In 1950 Hollyman’s wife, Jean, retired to have two children, a son, Burnes, and a daughter, Stephenie. Hollyman continued working on a free lance basis worldwide. They lived in Weston, Connecticut, and moved to Puerto Rico in 1957 . After advertising guru David Ogilvie, spotted Hollyman’s photography in Holiday, he hired him to produce ad campaigns for Mercedes, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, P & O Orient Steamship company and other accounts. His award-winning work of Pablo Casals walking down the beach with an umbrella and other ads were iconic for the era.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.
In 1963 Hollyman met Peter Brook, who had come to Puerto Rico location-hunting for a low-budget film he was to make of the Nobel-prizewinning novelist, William Golding’s now –classic fable, “ LORD OF THE FLIES”. Hollyman and the British Royal Shakespearean director “ started an extended but intense conversation about film, the book, photography and even philosophy and although I had never ever used a movie camera, I ended up as Director of Photography for “ Flies”, Hollyman later recalled. He had “ only a few weeks to bone up on the craft, ” for this low budget production. “ None of the crew had ever worked a feature before, apart from Peter Brook. We had no electricity for lighting and the film was shot natural light in a rough documentary fashion, thoroughly non-Hollywood style…like news photography. “ The film, as with the book, became a cult classic and was lauded at Cannes as a “ seminal film of the New American Cinema and a fascinating anti-Hollywood experiment in location film-making.”
Post Divorce
Hollyman and his wife Jean were divorced in 1963 and he moved to New York where he operated U.S. Productions and was Executive Producer for a national educational television five-part series the “ Population Explosion”, which won awards in 1965. He also wrote, directed and shot a half hour travel documentary for the Jordan’s World Fair exhibit, produced short films for the Italian State Tourism Board and filmed and directed advertising commercials. As a consultant to Encyclopedia Britannica he produced a film “5000 Brains” describing the new version of the encyclopedia and how information had been stored and retrieved for ages. He wrote and produced a book, The Oilmen, on the oil industry . He also photographed annual reports for Morgan Bank, Hewelett-Packard, Greyhound and Champion International.
He remarried in 1966, Audrey Bingham Hollyman, who died in 1985.
Hollyman served as President for the American Society of Magazine Photographers from 1969–1971 and subsequent to that on the ASMP President’s Advisory Council and Advisory Board. Hollyman was instrumental in leading ASMP’s efforts to revise copyright laws to make them more creator friendly.
He photographed extensive stories for Town and Country Magazine with his former photo editor from Holiday Magazine, Frank Zachary. In 1992 he spent six months working on assignment for Town & Country to commemorate Columbus’ discovery of America. Direct descendants of the conquistadors and Indians were brought to sites in South America where their ancestors had been Pizarro, Montezuma, Coretes, Cabeza de Vaco and of course Columbus-Inca emperors- all appeared in a 23-page photo essay which also became a book.
Demise Of The Giants
Hollyman moved to the Heritage in Austin, Texas, in 2006, from his home in New York, to be closer to his three grandchildren: Anna-Margaret, Helen and Mary Louise. He is survived by his son Burnes St. Patrick Hollyman and his daughter Stephenie, also a photographer.
In his January 2005 Editors Letter Titled "The Shots Seen Around the World" Vanity Fair Editor Graydon Carter mourned the demise of the “giants” of photography, the “ old –timers” who he says,
“I will tell you, are great company. Not only that, they seem to go on forever.[citation needed]
Every half-year or so, I squeeze myself into a booth at Gallagher’s, an ancient Midtown haunt not far from the Time & life Building, for a lunch with a small crew of these gifted elders. The walls of Gallagher’s are covered with boxing and horse racing photos and caricatures and such. The place has some stories to tell. And so do my companions on these occasions.
These twice-yearly lunches generally include my colleague Jonathon Becker ( a pup at 50) and such photographic greats as Slim Arons, 88, Arnold Newman, 86, Douglas Kirkland, 70, and Tom Hollyman, 85. Another regular is a man they all worked for at one point in their careers: Frank Zachary, the former editor in chief of Town & Country and the art director of the old Holiday Magazine in the 50’s. The last time we got together was for Zachary’s 90th birthday. Hollyman told me how they manage these lunches: “ We all tell the same stories, and the trick is to pretend we’re just hearing them for the first time.”

His last photography show was entitled "Chromes" and held in Austin, Texas.




Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Photo Detail | Thomas Hollyman - Belfast, Ireland


Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.
Photo Detail | Thomas Hollyman - Farmacia Central, El Salvador



Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.
Photo Detail | Thomas Hollyman - School Children in Belize



Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.


Photo Detail | Thomas Hollyman - Chile
Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.
Thomas B. Hollyman - National Pastime
The occasion for this picture was a Negro baseball game at Sportsman's Park, St. Louis. Walking around in the grandstands, Hollyman photographed these two Negro boys. He says that they were the essence of all grandstand fans with their jazz banded straw hats, soda pop, loud yelling and lusty laughter, shirtsleeved arms and peg-topped trousers. The shot was made as part of a layout forPictures, the rotogravure section of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Photography first got its grip on Hollyman during a trip to Europe, in 1936, with a college dance band. Until recently, Hollyman was a staff photographer for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Now he is a 22-year-old private in the air force photo section at Victorville, California. Picture taken with a Rolleiflex on Super XX film. Exposure in 1/100th of a second at f/16. A G-E #5 flashbulb, covered with a handkerchief picked up the foreground and balanced the sunlight below the stands.

Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.


Thomas Benton Hollyman (December 7, 1919 – November 14, 2009) was an American photographer.
Mr. Hollyman was a generous benefactor to the University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, MO and we thank him for his support and lifelong friendship.

Sept. 1946 - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Mr. Hollyman was graduated from Central Missouri State Teachers' College, Warrensburg, Mo., and did graduate work at the University of Missouri A captain in the Army Air Forces, he served on the staff of the Army News Service and Yank Magazine. Prior to military service he was on the staff of the Post-Dispatch for nearly two years and is now an editor at Curtis Publishing Company in New York. To Thomas B. Hollyman MR. AND MRS. LEO J. BURNES of Westfield, NJ, announce the engagement of their daughter. Miss Jean Elizabeth Burnes, to Thomas Benton Hollyman, son of the Rev. Dr. and Mrs. Jonathan C. Hollyman, 3309 Marshal road, IN a candlelight ceremony at Pilgrim Congregational Church last night .

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