A leading figure in the development of American documentaries, Paul Strand made his first impact as a still photographer. He gained national attention in 1936 for his contributions as co-writer, producer, and cinematographer on Redes (The Wave), a documentary about Mexican fishermen. Closely associated with many of New York's most elite and socially conscious artists, Strand founded Frontier Films in 1937 with the assistance of his cohorts Lillian Hellman, Archibald MacLeish, Clifford Odets, and others. The studio's mission was to create forward-thinking documentaries packed with deeper meaning. The studio made many excellent films until the dawn of WWII. Following the war, some of the founders faced blacklisting. Strand retired from filmmaking in 1948 and resumed his career as a still photographer.