‘Meet the Family’ Old Cabinet Photos by Betty.

Peculiarium-Colin-Batty-top2The “Meet the Family” series of the American artist Colin Betty, who had fun hijacking old cabinet card photographs to create a pretty strange gallery of horrors populated with fantastic creatures.
Peculiarium-Colin-Batty-18These photographs from the 1900s are retouched with acrylic paint, and have been exhibited at the Peculiarium gallery in Portland.

via Meet the family – When artist Colin Betty hijacks old cabinet photographs | Ufunk.net.

James Dean – Times Square, 1954.


James Dean, Times Square, New York, 1954
James Byron Dean (February 8, 1931 – September 30, 1955) was an American actor.
He is remembered as a cultural icon of teenage disillusionment and social estrangement, as expressed in the title of his most celebrated film, Rebel Without a Cause (1955), in which he starred as troubled teenager Jim Stark.
The other two roles that defined his stardom were loner Cal Trask in East of Eden (1955) and surly ranch hand Jett Rink in Giant (1956).
Dean’s premature death in a car crash cemented his legendary status.
He became the first actor to receive a posthumous Academy Award nomination for Best Actor, and remains the only actor to have had two posthumous acting nominations. (Wikipedia).
Source: vintage everyday: James Dean, Times Square, New York, 1954

For Lovers of Vintage Cameras.

collection-appareils-photo-4The French website Collection Appareils is an impressive online archive of over 10,000 vintage cameras, each with pictures and information!
A titanic work managed and curated by Sylvain Halgand, who classified models by brand, from Ace to Zion, including of course some famous brands such as Canon, Leica, Nikon or Fuji, but also forgotten brands like Lachaize, Cornu, Lumière or Sem.
A true gold mine for vintage camera lovers!
Many more Images to see via Collection Appareils – An online archive with over 10,000 vintage cameras | Ufunk.net.

History of the humble Suitcase.


When Phileas Fogg decides to circle the globe in Around the World in 80 Days, the 1873 novel by Jules Verne, he doesn’t take a suitcase.
“We’ll have no trunks,” he says to his servant Passepartout, “only a carpet bag, with two shirts and three pairs of stockings for me, and the same for you. We’ll buy our clothes on the way.”
At the time, the suitcase as we know it today hardly existed. In Verne’s day, proper travel required a hefty trunk built of wood, leather, and often a heavy iron base.
The best trunks were waterproofed with canvas or tree sap, as steamships were a reigning mode of travel.
Without this protection, a suitcase in the hold of a heaving, leaky ship would probably have been wet within a few hours, and crushed by sliding trunks within a few more.
SOV_NewSouth_CarpetbagThe Humble Carpet Bag.
When the suitcase finally did catch on at the end of the 19th century, it was quite literally a case for suits. A typical suitcase came equipped with an inner sleeve for storing shirts, and sometimes a little hat box on the side.
But even in the early 20th century, the “dress-suit case” was only one of countless styles of container that travelers could buy, from steamer trunks to club bags to Eveready portable wardrobes. These were boom times for the baggage business.
Which, of course, probably seems like an utterly useless fact. Most people care about containers much less than they care about the things containers contain—the pairs of pants, the paperback books, the miniature bottles of shampoo.
But the history of the suitcase spans every major transportation revolution since the steamship.
And this means that suitcases carry a lot more than spare socks and underwear—they carry in their design a subtle history of human movement.
Continue reading via The History of the Humble Suitcase | History | Smithsonian.

Smith’s Beard and Moustache Elixir, 1878.

6a00d83542d51e69e201a511ddb31a970c-500wiThere was perhaps nothing so satisfying to a fellow in America in 1878 than to have a massive moustache–or at least the idea of one, a call to high fashion in hairstyles for men.
But since not everyone could produce a garden on their upper lip there was always someone around to take advantage of the necessity of hope–in this case, the hope was provided by Smith & Co of Palatine, Illinois.

They sold a concoction of some sort that promised (on three applications) to produce a heavy moustache and/or beard with ‘no injury”.
The detail from the following snippet, which is actually a tiny detail from a full-page sheet of ads (see below)
A little research reveals the packet for the miracle-growth:


Moustache elixir[Source, Historic New England site]
I’m sorry now that I didn’t collect these before-and-after images, as I’ve seen dozens over the years–this one was a little too beforey-and-aftery to pass up.
via Ptak Science Books: Absurdist, Unintentional.

The Arch of Constantine, Rome, 1865.

View of the Arch of Constantine from the Colosseum by Gioacchino Altobelli (c1865)
Photographs of the act of photography were common in the 20th century but less so in the 19th, when every negative was a challenge to make.
One had to contend with tricky chemistry, cumbersome glass plates and large cameras, so each picture was carefully premeditated – and no photographer would allow a camera to interrupt his or her picture so noticeably unless he or she wanted it there.
Perhaps, then, this image was produced as part of an advertisement for Gioacchino Altobelli’s own enterprise
via Moabirds and a meat grinder: photography’s evolution – in pictures | Art and design | The Guardian