3/29/10

This is ANNIE


Meet Annie Rhebb. At least I think that's her name. I'm not sure. You might read the back of the photo and come up with a different interpretation. If so, let me know.

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Annie is quite a bit different than Rosa, though they are contemporaries. The first photo I posted of Rosa last year was taken around the same time as this photo, 1914. What a difference an ocean makes. Rosa in Paris. Annie in Ripplebrook.

I know nothing about Annie and do not have any other photos of her. She represents naive American girlhood in 1914 while Rosa represented the drama of a country at war.

Today what strikes me about this photo is Annie's hat. For that to make sense you really need to see my post today at my other blog, LANA TURNER was staring back at me. Annie is wearing a dark hat with white feathers. At my other site Lana Turner is wearing a dark hat with white feathers.

Annie, turn the feathers upside down! You won't believe the difference it makes.

3/25/10

Rosa RECLINING


I continue to be fascinated by Rosa. Many different sides to this woman of mystery. Here she reminds me of silent screen star Theda Bara. There's something very theatrical about Rosa in her youth. She was stylish, and though not classically beautiful by today's narrow standards, she always looked mysterious and lovely. Add in a French accent and there's just so much to wonder about. Was her voice low and raspy, ever so sexy? Or did she have a dreadful high pitched "feminine" voice? I had a friend that had one of those. Didn't fit her body. She always sounded a bit like a chipmunk. I'm trying to imagine her now. Old with a baby voice. For some people it works, for others...

If you type in "Theda Bara" at Wikipedia one of the interesting references is to a French silent screen star named Musidora. I have to wonder how much Rosa was influenced, if at all, by Misidora.
Musidora (23 February 1889 – 11 December 1957) was the stage name of Jeanne Roques, a popular French silent film actress. She became famous for her vamp roles in such film serials as Les Vampires and Judex, in which she developed a persona comparable to that of Theda Bara. In addition to acting she directed and wrote many of her films.

Born Jeanne Roques in Paris, France and raised by a feminist mother and socialist father, Musidora began her career in the arts at an early age, writing her first novel at the age of fifteen and acting on the stage with the likes of Colette, one of her life-long friends. During the very early years of French cinema Musidora began a professional collaboration with the highly successful French film director Louis Feuillade. But her first movie was Les miseres de l'aiguille, directed by Raphael Clamour in January 1914.

Adopting the moniker of Musidora (Greek for "gift of the muses") and affecting a unique vamp persona that would be popularized in the United States of America by actress Theda Bara at about the same time, Musidora soon found a foothold in the nascent medium of moving pictures. With her heavily kohled dark eyes, somewhat sinister make-up, pale skin and exotic wardrobes, Musidora quickly became a highly popular and instantly recognizable presence of European cinema.

Stardom
Beginning in 1915, Musidora began appearing in the hugely successful Feuillade-directed serials Les Vampires as Irma Vep (an anagram of "vampire"), a cabaret singer, opposite Édouard Mathé as crusading journalist, Philippe Guerande. Contrary to the title, the Les Vampires were not actually about vampires, but about a criminal gang cum secret society inspired by the exploits of the real-life Bonnot Gang. Vep, besides playing a leading role in the Vampires' crimes, also spends two episodes under the hypnotic control of Moreno, a rival criminal who makes her his lover and induces her to assassinate the Grand Vampire.

The somewhat surreal series was an immediate success with French cinema-goers and ran in ten installments until 1916. After the Les Vampires serial, Musidora starred as 'Diana Monti' in another popular Feuillade serial, Judex opposite René Cresté, filmed in 1916 but delayed for release until 1917 because of the outbreak of World War I. Though not intended to be "avant-garde," Les Vampires and Judex have been lauded by critics as the birth of avant-garde cinema and cited by such renowned filmmakers as Fritz Lang and Luis Buñuel as being extremely influential in their desire to become directors.

Other works
As well as acting, Musidora became a film producer and director under the tutelage of her mentor, Louis Feuillade. Between the late 1910s and early 1920s, she directed ten films, all of which are lost with the exception of two: 1922's Soleil et Ombre and 1924's La Terre des Taureaux, both of which were filmed in Spain. In Italy, she produced and directed La Flamme Cachee based on the work of her friend, Colette. At a time when many women in the film industry were relegated to acting, Musidora achieved a degree of success as a producer and director.

Later life
After her career as an actress faded, she focused on writing and producing. Her last film was an homage to her mentor Feuillade entitled La Magique Image in 1950, which she both directed and starred in. Late in her life she would occasionally work in the ticket booth of the Cinematheque Francaise — few patrons realized that the old woman in the foyer might be starring in the film they were watching. Musidora died in Paris, France in 1957 and was laid to rest in the Cimetiere de Montmartre.

Personal life
Musidora married Dr. Clement Marot on April 20, 1927. The union lasted fifteen years and produced one child, Clement Marot Jr. The couple divorced in 1944.
So, do you think Rosa was an original or was she heavily influenced by what she saw on the flickering screen?

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3/21/10

Another photo of ROSA WITH RODRIQUE



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Kodak Department of WAUKESHA DRUG STORE, ARKANSAS


Rosa's photos are mostly inside two old brown photo envelopes. I have no idea how old these are, but looking at the illustration they look to be around the 1930s. Take a look at the camera and clothing in the illustration. An old bellows style camera.

I have no idea what relationship Rosa had with Waukesha Drug Store in Arkansas. Perhaps she was traveling across country with Rodrique on a wonderful vacation and stopped to get some prints made. I do not know if this drug store still exists. I imagine now, if they do, they have one of those little kiosks where you insert your flash card and choose which images to print. Before the prints are even made you already know what the photos look like. Shoot, you now know what they look like a moment after taking them. The long waiting for prints and the joy, or dismay, at what you shot is now gone. Everything is instant. We don't have the patience to wait for anything anymore.

Waukesha Drug Store_Kodak_tatteredandlost
Perhaps this gives us another clue about Rosa. Perhaps her name was Rosa Michel. As usual, I just don't know. There isn't enough information to connect a series of dots.

3/20/10

ROSA with Rodrique and friends


Another shot of Rosa, this time with her fella, Rodrique, and friends. You can see she's wearing the same pants she wore in the previous shot.

Rosa_1941_tatteredandlost
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I'm thinking Rosa got out of Europe before the U.S. entered the war, but not sure. It's very hard to piece together her life other than she lived in France and then at some point moved to the U.S. and seems to have settled in the San Diego area.

3/17/10

ROSA with her fella


Many photos of Rosa to come over time. Through my eyes she was an interesting person, but then she might have been completely opposite. I will create the life I want for her. Her reality will no longer be attached to the images of her. A life unknown, but now an image that will live on. I think I would have liked Rosa.

When my best friend gave me the photos she told me the story she felt was attached. Rosa is a little bit like Jean who was on her trip to Honolulu last year. Bits and pieces of life images, not enough to construct a full life. With Rosa there is much more.


Click on image to see it larger.

This fella is in quite a few shots with Rosa so we'll assume he was her fella. Here they sit quietly along a river. I'm imagining it's in California because photos of her around this age all seem to be in the U.S. Then again, what do I know?

3/15/10

ROSA with her fox


This is Rosa. At least that's who we believe she is. This is from a negative that was stuck in a packet of old photographs that had belonged to Rosa. My best friend bought them years ago. We don't know the story of Rosa other than life began in Europe and at some point she moved to California.

Rosa_tatteredandlost

I posted another photo of Rosa last year. She was young and lovely in France and didn't have a dead animal draped across her shoulders. I've never understood the supposed charm of draping an animal, head and tail included, around your shoulders.

I will have more photos of Rosa through the years.

3/13/10

Gentlemen...START PEDDLING!


This is another negative from the same little packet where I found the sled airplane posted a few days ago. Same neighborhood? I don't know. Built by the same person that built the plane? Could be.


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I looked up "Trico" and found quite a few listings for various products. Everything from video games to industrial lubricants. Perhaps the way "Trico" is painted on this car will be familiar to someone. Perhaps this was a logo long since gone. Anyone? If you recognize anything post a comment.

If this belonged to the same kid that owned the sled I'm wondering what sort of career he chose. Did he end up in WWII working on engines? End up in Detroit designing cars? Or end up owning his own gas station? Probably none of the above. We'll never know.

3/10/10

COME SLIDE WITH ME


I have a packet of negatives bought at the flea market. I've never scanned any of them. I thought that every so often I'd just pull one out and scan it. We get what we get. There are I believe 29 negs in the little packet with "misc. negatives" written on the front.

The first one reminds me of one Jim Linderman at Dull Tool Dim Bulb posted the other day of a model plane coming in for a landing on a bed with a white bedspread. It was wonderfully odd, no doubt about it. This one is not quite so odd...I think...maybe. A sled made to look like a plane. Homemade or store bought? You decide.

plane sled_tatteredandlost
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I'm trying to imagine some kid in this thing rattling down a hillside while the mother, wearing an apron, stands at the kitchen window with furrowed brow, fingers nervously twitching at her mouth, wondering if junior is going to survive. Don't worry mother. I've seen worse. My cousins used to sit at the top of a very steep hill on Tonka trucks and go bat-you-know-what crazy until they ran into a bush. They all strangely survived.

Of course, the geography of this landscape has me wondering if these people had a hill. Did a kid just get in it and have someone pull them while they pretended to fire the dual guns? And how did they steer this thing? Too many questions. No answers.

Hmmmm...perhaps a German spy looming in the foreground taking photos of this US top secret fighter jet? Nah. Most likely the guy that built the thing.

3/7/10

Brothers, CAIN AND ABEL


I look at these boys, brothers no doubt, and think of Cain and Abel. The one with a slight smile, the other unemotional. I also think of the two brothers in East of Eden.

Click image to see it larger.

I have no information about these boys. We bring to them what we want.

I find it interesting that their hair parts in different directions. Perhaps they're twins and the mother parted their hair differently so she could tell them apart. However, the one on the left looks slightly younger.

3/5/10

From the CUT THE CAKE COLLECTION


"Here little darlin', let me cut you a piece of birthday cake. Oh no, no, no...it's harmless...like me. Come now darlin' just a little piece before this ship gets-a-rockin' again."

3/3/10

Brownie HAWKEYE CAMERAS and vernacular photography


For many of us the Kodak Brownie Hawkeye Camera is the first camera we ever used. The Hawkeye was first introduced by Kodak in September 1950 with an original list price of $6.95. I always remember this camera being around the house. It was a mysterious plastic box that I loved to hold and look through, pretending to push the shutter, capturing visual moments.

My folks first allowed me to use the Brownie on an outing to Ft. DeRussy at Waikiki. We were on a picnic with my best friend and her family. Somewhere I think I still have the blurred pictures I took that day, but I can't find them. I also have a photo of myself using the camera at my grandmother's house in Pennsylvania the first summer after we'd moved back to the mainland. Again, I know it's around somewhere and had it just a few months ago. I remember putting it away for safe keeping. Yeah, well, now I don't know where I put it. I do however have this photo of a complete stranger with her Brownie Hawkeye taken in 1955. That's all it says on the back, 1955.

I also have the small pamphlet (shown below) that came with the camera. When you consider how easy point-and-shoot cameras are to use these days, just the mere fact that you had to load film into one of these little boxes would confuse kids today.

To see more interesting facts and memories people have of their Brownie cameras go to the Kodak site and then click on "View Story." Well worth the little bit of time it takes to view the history of the different Brownie cameras.

How many vernacular photographs in your collection were taken with one of these?

Brownie Hawkeye 1_tatteredandlost
Brownie Hawkeye 2_tatteredandlost
Brownie Hawkeye 3_tatteredandlost
Brownie Hawkeye 4_tatteredandlost
Brownie Hawkeye 5_tatteredandlost
Brownie Hawkeye 6_tatteredandlost
Click on any of the images to see them larger.

3/1/10

GUFFAW if you must



Well, that pretty much ruined the shot. This is why I've wondered if the photographer took another. Or were all of these people surprised when they got the print and saw dear sweet Grace with her finger up her nose? That's Harold sitting next to her. Harold who was in the moment of the shot. Grace was in her own moment, far removed from what she was supposed to be doing. A quick guffaw should have been heard when you saw this.

And now we close with the entire group in place. Living a hopefully nice life, no family feuds too hard to overcome. Frank, the grandfather, probably teased Grace, the granddaughter, for many years to come about picking her nose in the portrait.

The family_tatteredandlost
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Wish I knew where they lived. Was this taken at a house in the country or city? Right now I'm going with city. Why? Because they have a lock on their mailbox! For some odd reason I think of locked mailboxes as something from today, not the sweet gentle past...which of course was not sweet and gentle.

Did they have marauding droves of drunken teenagers out on Friday and Saturday nights beating up mailboxes with baseball bats? It's still done in my neighborhood. I have a lock box. A large communal lock box which someone recently pried open with a crowbar. Even my junk mail isn't safe anymore.