This photo is of my dad’s mum, ‘going to work on an egg’. She isn’t, actually. She’s visiting the Ideal Home Exhibition in 1962. This photo came in a little yellow wallet (below) and was a promotion for Polaroid (or acrobatic lions. Or eggs).
“You have just seen how the remarkable Polaroid Land Camera works. This amazing camera shortens the entire photographic process to just 10 seconds. You click the shutter, count slowly up to 10 then remove a beautiful, finished black and white print. Photography cannot be any easier!
We are sure you will want to keep this picture of yourself for many years. That is why it was sealed under plastic with the Polaroid Print Coater. This Coater comes packed with every Picture Roll and with a few quick strokes it makes a Polaroid Land Picture a lasting print that will not discolour or fade.”
Unfortunately, some 50+ years later, the polaroid was looking a little dishevelled but I enjoyed restoring it.
This is a photo of my grandad when he worked at Lesney (early ’60s we think). Lesney is most famous for its Matchbox toys. I read that Matchbox began when Mr Odell, one of Lesney’s partners, once designed a toy for his daughter because her school only allowed children to bring toys that could fit inside a matchbox.
I heard the name Lesney a lot as a child. As well as my grandad, my nan also worked there, as did my mum and her brothers. One of my uncles met his wife there.
Here is the original photo with its scratches and tears.
You know when someone shows you something and you can’t ever unsee it?
Well, a friend pointed out that this ad background looks like a naked man with a big red penis! Now I can’t unsee it so it makes me laugh every time. Taste the feeling indeed! There were several locally but I havent seen it for a few days. Perhaps somebody else has noticed too!
Here’s another great photo from The Suitcase. This is my mum in the centre with her mum and dad to her right and my brother in front. I’m not around yet.
They were in Epping Forest, celebrating my brother’s first birthday. The dog belonged to her parents. The car was my grandad’s. What a beauty. He always had nice cars as I remember.
I wanted to retouch this one as it’s such a lovely shot with only my mum noticing the camera. As well as some scratches, it had some double exposure issues down the right hand side (below). The original was smaller than 6″x 4″ but I scanned it in at 1,200 dpi so I should be able to do her a nice 10″x 8″ print.
Here’s another photo from The Suitcase. I wasn’t going to retouch this one as it’s a bit blurry to begin with, plus it’s very badly scratched, but it’s such a handsome photo of my dad, I thought I’d take on the challenge (original below).
It was taken in ’57 in his RAF barracks in West Germany. He’s all dressed up for a demob party which ended in a nightclub. He thinks he’s still got the waistcoat (which wouldn’t surprise me) as well as the suitcase with wooden strips you see on top of the locker. We’re not sure who the pin-up is – possibly a German film star – but he hadn’t met my mum yet so we’ll let him have that!
If you’ve got any old photos you’d like saving, email email@example.com
This time last week, some of my friends and colleagues were recovering from ‘the RADs’ – the recruitment industry awards presented at Grosvenor House in London. Five agencies I freelance with had work in the shortlist so I was following their progress on twitter. I was thrilled to see three of them pick up awards. I was particularly proud of the Havas creative team, Duncan James and Andy Sewell, for the National Offender Management Service campaign which won three awards including Work of the Year. I was especially pleased because Duncan commissioned me to do the comping and retouching! Yay! Well done, boys!
You can see the campaign website here and a summary of the work and the other winners here: rad awards 2016 winners
Here it is – the Suitcase mentioned in my previous post. My Dad says he’s had it since 1949 (those are his initials near the handle). The new (tape) hinges were added in 1995 and are holding out pretty well!
Below, you can see the contents. I was looking for a particular photo of my mum as a child, standing on a chair. We didn’t find it but I came home with an envelope of casualties that need some photoshop love.
I did say they weren’t in any particular order but they’re even worse now – I could barely fit them back in. Maybe we should have a ‘suitcase weekend’. We’ll pass a handful of photos to mum and dad, they write who, what and where it is on the back, then we’ll lay them out in groups all over the floor until the case is empty. Then we put them all back, in labelled envelopes. It would probably take all weekend!
Or maybe it’s more fun just the way it is!