Alonzo James Hanagan was a New York male physique photographer who began his career in the late 1930s as a contemporary of George Platt Lynes. Better known as Lon of New York, Hanagan was mentored by Robert Gebhort, who taught him about lighting and the classical repertoire of masculine poses. Unlike his contemporaries who worked with mostly white, blonde, sun-kissed models, Lon chose to shoot mostly Mediterranean, Latino, African American, and working class men. He, like many other male portraiture photographers at the time, got his studio raided, was arrested, and got prints and negatives destroyed by the police on more than one occasion, which made him very weary about signing or mass producing his work.
Lon is considered part of the group of pioneering photographers responsible for the proliferation of male-on-male gaze photography, what historian of homoerotica Thomas Waugh has called “one of the greatest achievements of gay culture.” Lon of New York died months after the first public exhibition of his work at 88 years of age.