April 10, 2010

Saturday Snapshots: April 10, 2010

"If you don't know where you are going,

any road will get you there." ~ Lewis Carroll

{Happiness radiates through this hand tinted photograph of a young woman clutching a large bouquet of flowers and what appears to be a pair of paper scrolls. Her lovely dress (and adorable hairstyle) make me wonder if she was a beauty queen or perhaps this photo was taken to commemorate an event such as her high school graduation (so hence the scrolls which could be diplomas).}

{A true trove of vintage photographic goodness lives in this shot of an Angus camera display inside of a shop, taken during the 1940s. From the row of C3 rangefinder cameras to the neatly stacked boxes of film, both photographers and fans of photography alike can find something to love about this engaging image.}

{This photo is such a terrific gem, it shows a woman taking part in a 1957 fashion show in New York city and is part of a small collection of photos (of different models) that the person who posted it has uploaded. The women in these shots, beautiful as they are, do not strike me as professional models, but rather they feel more like "everyday ladies" who may have been asked to take part in this marvellous display of late 1950s clothing.}

{I have a soft spot in my heart for family photos such as this one from 1956. They make me wish my own family was larger and that I had shots like this of my relatives. Lacking such images, I find a certain joy in looking at groups of relatives that are not my own directly, but part of the larger family that ultimately makes up everyone on this planet.}

{Four women – each of whose dresses I’d massively adore the chance to wear – pose close together in this charming 1950s photo, which was found in France. I love looking at their outfits, from the strappy sandals to the first gal on the left’s bolero jacket, there is so much fashion history to be found in this beautiful photograph.}

{There is something strikingly eerie about this shot from the 50s, which makes it feel redolent of a movie still, perhaps from a horror or suspense film. The man behind the "Side Show" ticket both holds his hand up near his eye – was he making some kind of particular gesture or just caught in the act of rubbing his face? Either way it lends an even more ominous vibe to this unique carnival image.}

{At first glance one might this colourful vintage shot depicts two young cowboys, but closer inspections reveals long hair poking out from under those hats, identifying these youngsters as cowgirls – and adorable ones, in their matching duds, at that.}

{This photo jumps out at me, its crop and subject matter both striking and lovely. The shot itself depicts a simple scene, a young girl at the counter of a shop (likely someplace in Europe), yet it is powerful and timeless, thanks in no small part to the reflective, off-in-the-distance gaze of the girl, whose small stature seems to be dwarfed by the giant bell right beside her ponytailed head.}

{A merry scene fills this smile-inducing 1950s shot, as a group of friends (or relatives) gather around a table. While most of the people appear to be engaged in conversation, one playful young woman holds a piece of marble bread (or cake) up to her eye. This humorous act strikes me as interesting because it’s almost as though the swirled slice is a parallel to the camera’s lens itself.}

{Gentle tenderness flows through this slice-of-life image of a man (quite likely the child’s father) bends down to help readjust a little girl’s hat. This photo, which was taken in Prague during the 50s, shows a simple moment, yet it was one that was clearly worth immortalizing on film.}

{All images above are from Flickr. To learn more about a specific image, please click on it to be taken to its respective Flickr page.}

There is little sense in arguing that Lewis Carroll was a unique character; his life was complex and fascinating, from a childhood stammer that stayed with him forever to the fact that he never married, many rumours and much myth surrounds the man who created Alice in Wonderland. However, for all the controversy tied to Carroll, one cannot deny that he was a busy fellow. Throughout his life, at one point or another, Lewis Carroll held positions as an Anglican clergyman, a photographer, a mathematician and most famously as a writer.

Clearly this was a man who had little unoccupied time and most likely always had some new task or goal looming on the horizon, some plan that he believed would set him on the right track.

Carroll’s words hit a note with me, for I’ve long believed that it there much to be said for having a clear idea of where your life is going. Of course one’s world can flip upside in a moment (goodness know that’s happened to me on more than one occasion!), but if we live under the assumption that – even through the unavoidable bumps in the road – there is merit in concisely planning for tomorrow, we give ourselves a better ability to wisely plan for today.

When I look at old photographs I often ponder deeply about what happened to the (generally) unidentified faces that stare back at me. What paths did they chose? What regrets did they live with? What joys did they find in the years after their image was captured on film?

Though it’s highly unlikely I will ever know the answers to these questions, there’s something inspiring in the thought that they sought out avenues in life that allowed them to be happy. For has not this road been the one that humankind has been seeking since the dawn of time? The one that each of us, in our own lives, continue to strive towards with each new decision, plan and dream that we make.


  1. I especially love the last one, it tugs at my heartstrings and makes me think of my husband and daughters. Thanks.

  2. Jessica, a lovely collection of photos youve found. I love the one of the four girls posing, makes me wonder what my future family will think of photos of me with my friends :)
    I also love the large family shot above this one.
    Thanks for sharing!


  3. Thanks for sharing this. Such a beautiful post. And I need to study up on Lewis Carroll ;-)

  4. I love the one of the 1950s family that you pine for--every outfit is so unique! It also reminds me of going to grandmas farm as a child.

    I think the one of the two scouts/cowboys leaning against the car maybe Native American children, so they are possibly boys with long hair and not necessarily girls.

  5. I also adore old pictures. There is so much to learn from them. I also wonder about people from the past - their lives, their feelings, their history. More importantly you realise that the things which were important to them may not be important to anybody else. That is why vintage is so special. An old dress - who wore it, what was the occasion, who made it, when was it worn, why this colour, was it a gift?....The things which are precious to us, the little quirky things we keep just because... when we're gone very few people if at all will be able to link them to anything important, except the importance they themselves might give them if these become important to them.

  6. Jessica -

    Another endearing & inspiring post! Lovely photos, my sweet! Happy Sunday! I pray you are enjoying it to the fullest!


  7. Wonderful snapshots Jessica! I especially love the Angus camera display and the Sideshow photo is simply marvelous.

    Hope you had a glorious weekend!

    Best Wishes,

  8. Oh how beautiful all of these shots are!!!
    Thanks so much by the way, for the comment you left me on my blog!!

  9. My darling gal, you already know what I am going to say about your fantastic snapshots ;) ah, but my absolute favorite is the last one...it's so precious, and reminded me of my little goobie <3 thank you for sharing such beautiful pictures as always! and thank you for your sweeter than ice cream words ;) You are toooo tooo kind! and you're so very very welcome darling.

    p.s It's fantastic to know that you are a fan of the Golden Girls as well! =D