A while ago I saw a truly, terrible rant by a blogger on WordPress who was outraged that people were liking their posts without actually reading them. They had a list of reasons to justify how they knew people were doing this. They also had a long list of grievances against subscribers who treated their posts so shoddily.
So, here I am to say that I am guilty of this heinous offence.
I sometimes struggle to get onto WordPress. When I do feel well enough and I see how many posts I have missed, I feel overwhelmed. I try to click into each post using the WP Reader, to at least get a sense of the publisher’s aim, or to look at the pictures, but frequently find even that too much for me.
Quite apart from the fact I have a grand-sized excuse for my lethargy, (for those who don’t know, I have a degenerative condition called Ehlers Danlos Syndrome), I don’t understand why anyone would be upset at getting acknowledgement for their post, even if cursory.
I am very fond of the people who write the blogs I follow and want them to know I haven’t disappeared into the ether. A quick click on the like button lets them know I am still interested and still trying to stay in the loop. A quick check-in also helps to maintain my passion for publishing my own posts, when I am back to being able to sit up long enough to write them.
So, am I bad? Am I insulting you? Are you offended by the careering clicker? Let me know in the comments section, below.
10 June 2002, Nottingham, UK
While living in the UK, I worked for two different teaching agencies. The first one, Protocol, was sending me to some rough and tumble schools where I struggled to stay on top of things. However, it offered free professional development seminars, and god knows I needed them. The Agency was also run by a very nice group of people, so I stuck with them for a year.
This photo strip was taken at Nottingham train station when I was on my way home to Leicester after a Protocol seminar. I had also had a hair cut that afternoon.
Many of the photos in this long series are unremarkable. They make up a photographic album of my adult life, which gives me a lot of pleasure as I add each new photo to the collection. I also love the memories they bring back, when I write about them for this blog.
This strip of photos comes from my series Photobooth 41 Year Project. You can see all the posts that document the series by clicking here. I am still adding to this project using mostly digital booths to create the images. The project is now close to entering its 44th year.
A favourite, foreign, friend of mine, forages frequently to find fabulous fotos for me. (And now I have exhausted my alliterative skills I will plough on with this post!)
I love most of the people in my photos but some people more than others. What a fabulous pair these two are. My friend’s hypothesis is that they are sisters. My theory is that they are mother and daughter. Their noses and lips closely resemble the other’s, which convinces me that they are, at the very least, related in some way.
Regardless of their relationship to each other, they have a very similar fashion sense. Their hats and lipstick shades seem almost identical. I love the very arty, large silver pendant and cat’s eye glasses worn by the older woman.The younger woman has a very appealing gap in her teeth and a faraway look in her eyes that reminds me of a young Marilyn Monroe.
Thanks to Ted for his love and dedication to the cause of photobooth photo rescue. I have more gems from him to show you soon.
Catherine at 16
When I first introduced the photos above and below, in my post Sweet 16, I was unable to read the name that was written on the back of one of the photos. I received a lot of help identifying the sitter from reader’s comments. Ellis Tyd from How to Spot a Fraud was the first to give me her correct name, Catherine Nichepor. He also sent me a link, as did Mike from Mike’s Look at Life, to a blog where Catherine’s hand written recipes were being posted. This link also contained a lot of information about her history. John Crispin from John Crispin’s Notebook sent me a link to a US census of a Katherine Nichepor. It is definitely the same Catherine, despite her first name being spelt differently. I also received other links that were not quite as fruitful, but thank you to everyone for their help. I was thrilled with the response!
Here is some of Catherine’s story from the blog Yesterdish. Most of this information was taken from a scrapbook the author bought at a car boot sale.
Catherine was the daughter of Russian immigrants. In primary school, she went by the name Katrina Nichepor, then Cathern in middle school, finally settling on Catherine in high school.
Her parents operated a general store. She graduated from Wyandotte High School in 1933, a year after her elder sister Sophie. Sophie and Catherine both grew up dancing, and danced together in festivals at their Russian Orthodox church.
In 1935 Catherine started her dancing career. She danced under her own name and occasionally under the name Kay Nichols. She kept a scrapbook with newspaper clippings of some of the shows in which she performed, including the Hit Parade of 1936 in an autographed photo she sent home to her sister.
Catherine around 20 years old
Catherine met her husband, Michael Carl Marian, in Detroit in 1936, when she was 21 and he was 32.
Catherine in a dancing costume, aged 17
A page from her scrapbook
With her elder sister Sophie in dancing costume
The final image of Catherine is from Vintage Burlesque Photos. It is signed and dedicated to her sister, who at some point changed her name to Sonia.
I prefer the softer Catherine to the later fashionable, risqué Catherine. I wonder what her Russian Orthodox family thought of her move into burlesque theatre, the hard lines of her make-up and her provocative PR photos? I fear they wouldn’t have approved at all!
I don’t know about you lot, but these are the most outrageous cat’s eye glasses I have ever seen! These sharply geometric, black-rimmed sunglasses are edged with different sized diamantés. They are bling with attitude. The young lady is also wearing a very cool, paisley variation, print dress. I imagine it to be coloured in purple and orange, making a fittingly groovy ensemble with the glasses. I love her cheeky smile!
Below is a second young woman wearing another fine pair of cool cat sunnies. Around her neck is a chain, on which hangs a gold or silver ring and she is posing as a fashion model of the time might have posed. You have style, girl!
These two photos came from the same online seller in the USA. Unfortunately the quality of the bottom image isn’t so good, but those fab frames deserved a place in this post. Both photos are undated, however I think they are both from the early 1960s
This photo from France depicts possibly the oldest person I have yet found in a photobooth image. This sweet grandmotherly woman has a kindly look to her eyes. There is a serenity to her that I like very much.
Around her neck is a choker, on which hangs a framed photograph of a young man. I suppose it could be a young woman, but the lack of any visible adornment, such as a hat, jewellery or decorated collar, leads me to conclude that it is not. She is wearing a printed blouse and there is also what appears to be a brooch in the vee of her coat collar. She has an understated elegance that suggests to me that she was a woman of great style in her youth.
Assuming the choker is truly black, and not just a dark colour that appears black in a monochrome print, one can also assume her coat is black. Is she in mourning? I would say this photo was taken sometime in the 1930s. Is the young man a son who died in WW1? Maybe he is a long dead husband? At her advanced age, and in this era of higher mortality than today, she must have experienced death with a frequency that we cannot now imagine.
I feel that she has experienced life’s vicissitudes with magnanimity and a sense of adventure. What must she have thought about being ushered into a curtained, dark, tiny booth to be photographed by an invisible camera?
Marco Ferrari – Self Portrait
Photobooth artist Marco Ferrari has work featured in the book Photomaton by Raynal Pellicer. Only a limited amount of his photography is shown there, so it was a great discovery when I found an abundance of his pictures on Instagram. Marco works with many different analogue cameras, (Go Analogue, Digital Is Dead is his motto), but his greatest passion is making work in photobooths. He has his own colour booth in Italy, but as he is now based in the UK, he needs to look outside his studio to make his booth images. In an ongoing project, Inked, Marco uses public, black and white photobooths to create stunning portraits of people and their body art. Marco loves photobooths so much, he even commissioned a tattoo of one. (See the bottom of this post.)
You can read more about Marco’s work on the My Cheap Camera blog by clicking here. If you click here, you will see a large collection of his photobooth, photographic explorations. Finally, if you would like to purchase any of his work, he sells beautiful prints of his favourite images at Big Cartel, here.