Newseum Deconstruction

One of the permanent exhibits at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., is a room that displays each of the Pulitzer Prize winning photographs, dating back to 1942. Among these photographs is the famous, “Babe Ruth Bows Out,” which won the Pulitzer Prize in photography in 1949. The photo depicts Babe Ruth standing near home plate, slightly bowing to the rest of the stadium looming around him. This photo became so famous because it captures Ruth’s last game of his career. The photo was taken on June 13, 1948, which is the day that Ruth announced that he was ending his career due to terminal cancer. Not only was this picture so successful because of the circumstances regarding Ruth’s career, but it was also successful just because of the photograph itself. The photograph follows the rule of thirds, as Ruth is not in the center of the photograph but is instead on the left third line. The photograph also utilizes angle of view, as the photographer clearly took the photo from below, making Ruth the subject. By taking the photo from below, it adds a better perspective and puts Ruth even more in focus. It also allows to see the stands and rest of the team in the background. On top of that, the depth of field in this photograph is used very successfully. Even though Ruth is very much in focus in the foreground, not only can you see the stadium and the huge crowd in the background, but you can also see his whole team standing up in front of him. This really adds an element of not only context, but also perspective on what is happening and why it is such an important moment, not only just for Ruth, but also for the Yankees franchise and fanbase in general. The framing of the photo also adds to its success. Not only does it follow the rule of thirds, but the photo is framed in a way that includes the third base line and adds interesting angles at the bottom of the photo. It is also framed to show the stadium and all of the stands behind him but does not include a lot of blank or empty space. The photo includes no empty space, as every inch of it has an interesting aspect or subject. This not only shows how impactful this moment was for Ruth, but also shows how this impacted the Yankees community as a whole. Finally, the photographer utilized motion capture. Although Ruth is not fully bowing to the crowd, you can see in his stance and body alignment that the photographer captured him at the end of the bow. This is interesting because it shows Ruth with a bowed head, which is a very powerful pose. Not only is this a successful photograph because of the elements that the photographer used, but it is also an impactful one. Ruth died around two months after this photo was taken, so it was one of the last famous photos of him. Also, this was not only his last game, but it was the day that the Yankees retired his number 3 along with Ruth. The photographer not only captured a beautiful photo, but also an impactful and important moment in history.