They say a picture says a thousand words, but sometimes it takes a long time for those words to tell the true story of the photograph or painting. Pictures can be interpreted all sorts of ways by those who view them, but only the photographer or artist and the subject know what was truly going on when it was taken. In the case of images that have been around for years, they’ve been given ample opportunity to become shrouded in mystery with several rumors surrounding its creation. Here are ten surprising true stories behind 10 images you’ll immediately recognize.
Famed photographer Annie Liebovitz took this photo on December 8th, 1980, just hours before John Lennon was shot to death. The iconic photograph was the result of Lennon’s willingness to strip and Ono’s desire to stay fully clothed, which Lennon was okay with because he thought it would make for a good photograph. It turned out to be the only photo she took of them that day.
Norman Rockwell painted this photo that appears to be nothing more than a few people and a dog reading the stock exchange. However, people quickly noticed the grocery boy appears to have three legs. All sorts of rumors regarding the purpose of giving the boy three legs started to spread, but Rockwell admitted it was just a mistake.