If a picture is worth a thousand words, Arnie Gore's photos had a lot to say.
One of them, in a most unexpected way, brought Gore to Milwaukee. The photo was taken in 1959, when he was a photographer with The Des Moines Register. Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev was caught laughing and patting an Iowa man's oh-so-prominent belly.
"You are a real American," Khrushchev declared.
The photo also appeared in Life magazine. Not long after, a good friend - then a writer with The Milwaukee Journal - had someone he wanted Gore to meet here.
It was public relations man Ben Barkin, who later helped launch the Great Circus Parade.
Barkin started talking about how he wanted to work with a commercial photographer who had a journalist's eye, someone who could do pictures like the one of Khrushchev and the big-bellied man in Iowa.
"Arnie opened his briefcase and pulled out the photo," said his wife, Elly Gore.
"I'm the man who shot that picture," he told Barkin.
And so, Gore found a new home.
Arnold Gore died Tuesday, following years with multiple sclerosis. He was 72. The Gores lived in Glendale and earlier in Shorewood.
He was born in Chicago and raised in Kankakee, Ill. He and the former Elly Green met during their freshman year at the University of Iowa, where Gore majored in photojournalism. They married in 1956, two weeks after both graduated.
They moved to Milwaukee, and Barkin promised to send clients Gore's way. He opened Gore Illustrations in 1960. Clients included the Jos. Schlitz Brewing Co., the Marcus Corp., Manpower, A.O. Smith and Koss.
In 1963, Barkin persuaded client Schlitz Brewing to bring the circus parade to Milwaukee. Gore became involved with publicity photos for those early parades.
"I took my kids through the Circus World Museum in Baraboo," said son Dan Gore, "and a lot of photos on the walls were his work."
Gore also became known for his environmental portraits of families and children, often taken in local parks or a family's backyard.
He owned Gore One-Hour Photo, said Deanna Aliota, his daughter, who managed the store and earlier worked with the photography business.