Thursday, August 30, 2007

Box Brownie

This lovely picture was made by Bert Hardy in the 1940s, using the very entry-level Box Brownie camera, as proof of the pudding after having written an article about how an expensive camera was not necessary to take good photographs.

Of course some may argue that with a crappy camera, a good photographer is even more necessary, due to the camera's limitations.

And then again, especially in modern times, there is a wide margin between a "crappy" camera and an "expensive" camera. Fifty years ago a good camera cost several months income for most people, today you can get a good camera for a few hundred dollars.

TTL quoth:
There is something magical about vintage photos that I don't fully understand. Even a mediocre vintage photo has so much more impact than an equivalent contemporary photo.

There's something to that.
It could be nostalgia.
It could be generally richer grey tones in the larger formats then.
It could be that most images that are seen still were taken by accomplished photographers, and the knew how to get the most from B/W, since color was rarely used by serious photographers until after 1970. Using the right light to mold the forms and separated objects and so on.
It might be something else.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, August 30, 2007   8 comments links to this post


At 31 Aug 2007, 00:20:00, Anonymous terry said...

oh to be the wind beneath the dress :) as always sir eolake, I tipp my hat. smiles.

At 31 Aug 2007, 03:21:00, Anonymous ttl said...

There is something magical about vintage photos that I don't fully understand. Even a mediocre vintage photo has so much more impact than an equivalent contemporary photo.

This one is great no matter how you look at it.

At 31 Aug 2007, 03:54:00, Blogger eolake said...

Yes, there is something to what you're saying. Funny, that. Wonder what that is.

I feel the same way about cars and planes from 90 years ago, but that may be a different thing.

At 31 Aug 2007, 05:27:00, Blogger Alex said...

There are cars from the 70's that I used to think were square and boxy, and nothing compared with 60's and earlier. However now, a 70's Buick has a lot of hidden detail which I didn't see then. Probably because in the 70's we hand't had the sleekness of the 80's teardrop designs and the 90's un-inventiveness.

If you want to see a good looking contempory car look up the Holden Efijy.
The Lion is back!

At 31 Aug 2007, 06:37:00, Anonymous ttl said...

That Holden Efijy looks nice! Funny gaffe with the steering wheel, though.

At 31 Aug 2007, 23:21:00, Blogger Alex said...

You're right about that steering wheel - how does the airbag deploy?

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At 1 Sep 2007, 06:10:00, Blogger Final Identity said...

I fall for "vintage" of several varieties, too. I like collecting workable, usable "vintage" razors, watches, wallets, cufflinks, and fountain pens, for example. I love looking at the pictures Eolake provides of "vintage" cameras, especially the higher-end ones (though I don't spend that kind of money or storage space on camera collections). And my first blush with ...


... Francoise Hardy was thanks to a "vintage" video Eolake posted here at the blog. I wrote about it then, the old 1960s cars and skirts and cat-eye ladies' glasses just got my motor revving.

That 1940s picture in THIS example is EXTREMELY revealing for the time. Golly, we can see all the way up her thigh!

At 4 Sep 2007, 01:45:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

terry said...
"oh to be the wind beneath the dress"

I don't know if this should inspire me envy for your imagination or fear at your ideas! :-D


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