photographer Alan Mungavin takes a shower in 1950

Whoops!

Toronto. Well George Dunbar has spotted another funny photo-related essay! In the July 10th, 1950 LIFE magazine issue (6th bullet down in link), British photographer Alan Mungavin set up to take a photo with an old shutterless field camera. As Mungavin carefully backed up to expand his scene, he fell backwards into what looks like a wading pool!

The lens cap is still in place suggesting the only shot taken was of a rather wet photographer …

 

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would you rather a Kodak 35 to a wet plate camera?

Kodak 35 RF Model
LIFE Oct 30, 1950 Ad

Toronto. In late October, 1950, LIFE magazine ran an ad for Seagram’s American version of  Gin called Ancient Bottle Gin. To promote it as a modern drink, the ad suggested you would more likely prefer a snappy modern Kodak 35 rangefinder camera capable of colour photographs to an old black and white slow speed wet-plate camera.

Today, the Kodak 35 rangefinder camera is worth about $20 at best while the wet plate camera, tripod, and brass lens – if you can find them – would be very valuable. Ironic. The Kodak 35 rangefinder camera was the American war-time answer to the German Leica and lasted from 1940-1951. It was a fixed lens camera with various f/3.5 Kodak lenses and shutters.

Thanks to George Dunbar for sourcing this lovely old advertisement. A step back in time indeed!

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Photo News 27-2, Summer 2018

Snails by Marianna Armata
in PHOTONews 27-2

Toronto. At the end of May, I was at our latest photographica-fair and bumped into Norn Rosen, editor of the PHOTONews. I said to Norm that I had enjoyed the aricles in 27-1 about macro-photography. “Great!”, he replied, “there are more articles on macro-photography in the latest issue which has just gone to press”.

And sure enough, as I opened my Globe last week, there it was, the latest issue of PHOTONews. On the cover was a whimsical macro shot of two snails on green stems by Marianna Armata of Montreal. Inside this issue in the column TECHNIQUE TIPS,  Christian Autotte covers Polarizing Macro, a technique that uses polarizing filters to enhance macro shots. As usual the articles and photo galleries are thought provoking – even the advertisements inspire the amateur and professional alike.

If you don’t subscribe to a large daily newspaper wth a complimentary issue enclosed, or are not near a newsstand, wait a few months and this issue in both English and French will appear on the PHOTONews website!

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David Douglas Duncan 1916 – 2018

David Douglas Duncan in Miami,
Florida, April 1969. Photograph:
Ray Fisher/The LIFE Images
Collection/Getty Images

Toronto. George Dunbar dropped me a line the other day noting that the Guardian had announced the death of the famous American war photo-journalist David Douglas Duncan in France were he had lived since the 1960s. Duncan was one of last of the WW2 era soldiers.

My aunt Claire from Belgium was a young war bride who emigrated here a year after the war ended. She was born about 1924. I can still remember the excitement when she arrived in her new country and at her new town. Her father was a station master in Ghent. Now in her 90s, she is still alive.

I first learned of Duncan in the famous TIME-LFE series on photography. Duncan and his photos were featured in their THEME volume. Another famous photographer.

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June 6th commemorated D-Day landing in 1944

Normandy Beach
German bunkers in IR
by Lynda Laird

Toronto. Are you old enough to remember the June 6, 1944 D-Day landing of allied troops on the beaches of Normandy 74 years ago? The few remaining film clips of that epochal landing are all Canadian although they are often credited to American forces. Bob Lansdale did a detailed story which appeared in Photographic Canadiana 42-2 and on our website here.

A few days ago, my friend Russ Forfar sent me an email with a link to BBC News and a picture essay by Lynda Laird on June 4th. She used colour infra-red to show German bunkers on the beaches of Normandy previously hidden by camouflage and shrubbery.

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every photo is a lie …

    PhotoEd magazine
    Spring/Summer 2018

Toronto. … or so PhotoEd magazine says!  Editor Rita Godlevskis has recently released her latest edition of PhotoEd magazine (Spring/Summer 2018) covering the many aspects of photo manipulation from the earliest days of darkroom magic to manipulating the subject(s) to photoshopping the raw image(s).

Some times the manipulations are to improve the photo record; other times to manipulate the viewer (i.e. in today’s parlance fake news). Pick up a copy of this issue today at the newsstand, or better yet, subscribe – just $20/4   issue year! And, yes, our ad is there too – a full page gem on page 10. …

Before I read this issue, I thought “a picture is worth 1,000 words” and “the camera doesn’t lie” was always true but sometimes the first quote relies on the second …

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Holtze on modern video editing

Mark Holze
Modern Vlogger

TorontoVideo Editing – Mark Holtze CANCELLED

Mark sends his regrets. He will be out of town when we hold the June 2018 meeting and has asked to be rescheduled.

We were first introduced to Mark when he recorded one of the Photographica-Fairs down at the Trident Centre. Mark was recently recorded on Global TV reminiscing about 8mm film his grandparents shot in the Maritimes.

An accomplished vlogger and old film camera enthusiast, Mark will be discussing modern day video editing and might even offer a short recent video to entertain and educate us! Mark has his own Youtube channel, the number one social media these days according to recent pundits.

The public is always welcome at our meetings. Go to our Programs page for directions.

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PHSC trunk sale July 15, 2018

PHSC 8th Annual
Trunk Sale – rain or shine

Toronto. Coming NEXT month, our 8th annual Larry Boccioletti trunk sale will take place once again in the parking lot of the Trident Hall. Free attendance, Modest charge for an exhibitor spot.

Open 8 am to 1 pm. Come out and check the bargains you may have missed in May at our photographica-fair in the same location (but indoors). Click on the icon at left for map and details. See you there!

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a marketeer’s dream assignment …

Ansco ad in
June 19, 1950 LIFE
magazine

Toronto. A while back I posted a note about Ansco’s answer to Kodak’s baby Brownie – the Ansco Panda. In this summer 1950 LIFE ad (thanks George!) the marketeers promote the little beauty with FOUR Ansco films at a special price (in the USA, of course).

The camera is marketed with its short-falls and common Ansco features as special: The large viewer is touted as “twin lens” and a “brilliant reflex-type finder centrally located”. It has an “automatic spring-type shutter – almost all shutters were spring operated,”,  “plastic body”, “red shutter release button – a feature of most Ansco cameras”, “easy to load and use – like any cheap box camera”, “sharp, big pictures”, and “12 exposures on standard 620 roll [film] – the number of shots depended on the size of the negative, and was usually 8 or 12 per roll”.

And being 2-1/4 square negatives, the Panda could also take colour prints and slides when used with colour film which was much more expensive and far less light sensitive. Kodak’s 35mm Kodachrome of the day was about ASA 10 or perhaps less. Ansco Color (later Anscochrome) was about three times faster at ASA32.

And like Gillette or Kodak, the reusable product at a low price introduced the consumables (be they razor blades or film rolls) to a new audience.

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Sir Alec and camera

Sir Alec c 1950

Toronto. Our friend Goldie at urbanToronto.ca spotted this lovely picture featuring Sir Alec Guinness back in 1950 before he was knighted.

In one of eight roles he acted in the 1949 movie Kind Hearts and Coronets, Guinness played a photographer complete with this ancient field camera on a tripod. The camera has a bulb and what looks to be a Thorton-Pickard shutter!

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