Tourmaline .

Toy Photographer, Blogger, Resin Crafter, Toy Photography Historian

Posts from the ‘Words’ category

EcoRelics, Jacksonville, FL

Went to a very cool antique store this past Saturday. EcoRelics sells architectural salvage, reclaimed construction materials and antiques.

That makes for a wonderful photography opportunity. Well I mean, and also is a good place to buy all those mentioned things, but I came away only with photos this time around. Check ’em out, and then go check out the store too if you’re in the area!

Click an image to open the gallery.

 

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Hans Bellmer – A Doll Day Feature

Today, August 2nd, is Doll Day and in realizing this I knew I had an interesting opportunity to talk about Hans Bellmer, an artist I recently came across while researching another post to come.

Bellmer was a surrealist photographer in the 1930s. In his work he almost only photographed life-sized dolls he built beginning in 1934 with the help of his wife. The dolls were made of wood and metal skeletons covered in plaster and paper mâché. His work is quite surreal, and also intriguing. It is believed that much of Bellmer’s work stems from his own childhood trauma. The images seem to reveal that pain.

I’ll admit, viewing many make me uncomfortable. This is because I empathize with the state of the doll in each image, and in a way, with the state of mind of the artist. This lends a lot of power to images of toys and dolls. We can see ourselves within these representations and experience emotion along with the inanimate objects.

I’ll leave the googling of other works, and theories up to you, but here I’ve chosen a couple that I find quite captivating.

See more surrealist figure work of this time period here.

Let me know what you think of this artist and his work, and separately, in the spirit of doll day, share all your memories of dolls in your life.

Follow me on instagram to stay up to date with what I’m up to. You’ll be the first to see what I’m researching and creating. Just click the screenshot.

The History of Faked News Photography

“A lot of things we talk about today we talk about as unprecedented. It’s important to look back and see how these same concerns and issues have been raised at many points throughout history.”

-Katlyn Carter, American Historical Association

Calvert Richard Jones, Capuchian Friars, 1846

“Photography’s reputation for objectivity and veracit has always made it an indespensible tool for persuasion.”

Faking It

Photography was invented in 1840, and we see evidence of faked photos as far back as 1846.

We’ve discussed faked photos using toys, as a way to convince someone of some thing or event, but photo fakery goes even deeper. And with faked news photos coming up over the past few years, I thought it was time to discuss the history of this practice.

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The War Films Made with Toys

“The lesson here, surely, is not that the camera can, and often does, lie, but that it has lied ever since it was invented.”

Mike Dash, Smithsonian

The Spanish-American war began in 1898. Publications wanted photographs, theaters wanted films. The problem was, not everyone could get to Cuba, and even if they could, cameras of the day weren’t very fast, so capturing action was out of the question. So many film-makers took matters into their own hands. The ones here, used models.

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My Toy Photos that Didn’t Fool the World

“Never have I found the limits of the photographic potential. Every horizon, upon being reached, reveals another beckoning in the distance. Always, I am on the threshold.”

-W. Eugene Smith

So I’ve been writing all these post about toy photos that fooled the world and I had a thought, what if I made some of my own.

I highly doubted that in today’s technological world my photos would fool the world in the way that these historical photos have. It’s easier to fool the world when the only access to photos is grainy, black and white images in newspapers and magazines. I thought I’d try anyway because I simply wanted to see what came of it.

I’ve made some creature photos in the past, and seeing that fairies and the Loch Ness monster did so well in history, cryptoids seemed like the way to go. I’d already pegged Bigfoot and the Loch Ness monster as photo possibilities, and had an ho scale (2cm tall) Bigfoot, and a plastic Brontosaurus (Loch Ness Monster) at the ready. So now just to decided how to photograph and share the images.

Why wouldn’t there be more creature sightings in a world where animals are out and about more than ever with humans away? Read more

The Toy Photo that Fooled the World for 60 Years

The Surgeon’s Photograph

“I realised, for the first time, with complete assurance, the picture was not a fake and that the Loch Ness Monster was real and tangible; a living animal -or one that had been real and alive when the picture was taken in 1934.”

-Nicholas Witchell, The Loch Ness Story

The year is 1934, Marmaduke “Duke” Wetherell, a movie-maker and big game hunter, was hired by the London Daily Mail to find evidence of the Loch Ness Monster. He arrived at the lake and found mysterious footprints. After having the casts of the prints tested, it was found out that the prints belonged to a hippopotamus. The London daily Mail wouldn’t let Wetherell live this down.

Livid, Wetherell came up with a plan. He’d give them precisely what they had asked for, evidence of the monster, one way or another.

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