McLaughlin-Gill, Frances (1919—)

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McLaughlin-Gill, Frances (1919—)

American photographer and filmmaker . Born in New York City in 1919; twin sister of Kathryn Abbe; Pratt Institute, B.F.A., 1941; married Leslie Gill (a photographer and artist), in 1948 (died 1958); children: one daughter, Leslie Gill (b. 1957).

Frances McLaughlin-Gill was born in New York City in 1919, and began studying photography seriously at the age of 18. She graduated from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn with a B.F.A. in art and design in 1941, and that year won Vogue magazine's Prix de Paris contest. From 1940 to 1942, she also studied painting at the New School for Social Research and at the Art Students League in New York City. She served as a member of the photography staff of the Condè Nast magazines from 1944 to 1954, photographing still lifes, portraits, celebrities, and fashion and travel shots for magazines including Vogue, Glamour, and House and Garden. In 1948, she married artist and photographer Leslie Gill. The couple had a daughter, Leslie, in 1957; McLaughlin-Gill was widowed the following year. She worked as an independent film producer and director from 1964 to 1973, shooting television commercials for major soap and cosmetics manufacturers. She also produced short films, and received a gold medal at the International Film and Television Festival in New York City in 1969 for the one-hour film Cover Girl: New Face in Focus, commissioned by the Cover Girl cosmetics company. In 1978, she retired from filmmaking and production to take a teaching post at the School for Visual Arts in New York City. With her twin sister Kathryn Abbe , she published the book Twins on Twins in 1980. McLaughlin-Gill continued to produce photographs for magazines until 1985.


Rosenblum, Naomi. A History of Women Photographers. NY: Abbeville Press Publishers, 1994.

Grant Eldridge , freelance writer, Pontiac, Michigan

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McLaughlin-Gill, Frances (1919—)

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