one thing i can never resist when i am visiting someone’s home, even if it’s a stranger, is to flip through any photo albums that might be lying around. usually they’re of old photos – because, let’s face it, people don’t really put together physical photo albums anymore. everything is online, on facebook or in your instagram or flickr feed. that’s cool, i’m like that too. but i still revel in looking through photos, which i suppose is why i gravitate towards vintage photography.
i was digging around in the Life Magazine archives (as i often do) when i came across these photos of a beautiful modern beach house in the La Jolla shores area of San Diego. after doing a bit of research i learned that it was designed by american architect William Kesling for Walton MacConnell in 1946-47. amazingly the original address is actually listed, so i looked it up on google maps – and it seems like some of the original part of the house might still be in existence! though it looks to have been extended on a massive scale.
i am still as broody for pets as i always have been. we are waiting for the right time (or rather, home) to finally get a dog – and my yearning for one has gotten to the point where i am already naming them. the big dog will be called Coach Taylor, that much i’m sure of. but for now i am resigned to enjoying other people’s pets and looking at pics of animals on the internet. i spent quite a bit of time looking through the vintage photos of owners and their sweet dogs over at Shorpy, so i thought i’d share some of the more interesting shots with you.
ok first of all, i have to draw your attention to the magnificent platform shoes that these ladies are wearing – in 1940. 1940! i always seem to mistake it for a bit of a fuddy duddy decade (well maybe it was for the majority of the population), but i’m continuously amazed by how fashion-forward some women were, especially when it came to wearing beautiful tailored suits (something that seemed to go out of fashion for most of the 50s and 60s? vintage lovers will have to chime in here, i don’t know much about vintage fashion besides watching a whole lot of Mad Men). you obviously won’t miss their fabulous glasses in this shoot, either. maybe Miami just does something to people.
i thought i’d share a little resource with you today. if you’re into dabbling around with imagery, need inspiration for visual projects or graphic design moodboards or whatever – you might be interested in the Biodiversity Heritage Library. they have hundreds (thousands?) of hi-res images from a consortium of natural history and botanical libraries. you can delve into a world of insects and botanicals and fungi and sea creatures… gorgeous even just to look at.
i’m so glad to see that the National Geographic Found tumblr is still going since i first posted about it back when it launched in March. they have a ton of brilliant photos on there now (this one is especially notable). imagine being the Nat Geo staffer who gets to go through the archives and update the blog – dream job! i especially love the bright kodachrome looking shots, they make me feel like going on holiday with a film camera and snapping some of my own.
when i was compiling yesterday’s post about art appreciation i came upon these photos taken by Wallace Kirkland for Life magazine. the photo essay shows scenes from a summer art school in 1948, and after a bit of googling i discovered that the school in question still exists! OxBow is situated in the Saugatuck area of Michigan, and was established over a century ago.
i haven’t visited Shorpy in a long time, but since i’ve been enjoying the latest seasons of period dramas like Downton Abbey and Boardwalk Empire lately i thought it was time for a deep browsing session. it’s remarkable to see how rapidly things changed at the turn of the century (this is all i kept thinking when watching the season finale of Downton Abbey – how weird to see the characters in the context of a roaring twenties dance club). these photos are in chronological order and range from 1900 through to 1977, and though they are by no means comprehensive or representative of all those decades it’s still pretty cool to see how time goes by. it’s also interesting to see how photos changed when cameras became a staple of every home – a lot of vacation pics and posing in front of cars.