Alfred Eisenstaedt from Life Magazine
Some call it the happiest photo ever taken. On a fall day in 1950, photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt spotted a drum major practicing his high steps on a playing field. “I saw a little boy running after him,” he recalled. “All the faculty children ran after the boy. And I ran after them.” Eisenstaedt snapped the shot on impulse while covering the University of Michigan’s famous marching band for Life magazine.
Life’s director of photography, David Friend, called Drum Major an “ode to joy.” In 1993, President Bill Clinton agreed; when he was offered any Eisenstaedt print as a gift, this is the one he reportedly chose.
Need a little more joy? Here is the happiest country in the world.
Photograph by Alfred Eisenstaedt from Life Magazine