Aug 25, 2013

Retro and Vintage Goodness

In the previous post I wrote about the cool vintage photography equipment that will soon be available via eBay auction. The Macbeth QuantaLog densitometer given to me as a gift sits on my desk beside me as I work, a beautiful example of industrial design that, sadly, we don't see any more.

Take this 1938 Univex Mercury camera, with a distinctive half moon top which housed a unique metal rotary shutter system, giving it a wide range of shutter speeds. The space was put to use with a depth of focus table, and a Tricor interchangeable lens system rounded out the modern design. This camera is not just functional, but beautiful to look at, a design that pleases the eye.

Below are some links to websites that have lots of scans and images of beautiful industrial design, not just in photography, but in cars and appliances as well. Enjoy these links, and enjoy the beauty of a lost era, in which everyday objects were designed to please the eye.

This is an awesome site, with loads of vintage car brochures, advertisements and manuals submitted by people and covering cars from all eras. Pure car porn (if you'll pardon the expression).

You can read car brochures from the era of big, stylish cars, see how they were marketed and how manufacturers catered to design trends of the time. Even car names were cooler back then, with names such as Fireflight, Thunderbolt, Rocket 88, Firedome. What to we have today? Letters and numbers that don't mean anything.

Below: Take a look at this 1971 Chrysler Imperial. This car is GARGANTUAN. Can you imagine maneuvering this thing in crowded supermarket parking lots? You'd need boat fenders to toss over the side. This car came with a huge 440 cubic inch motor that sucked down gas like it was going out of style, and a Torque-Flyte automatic transmission. Not long after these land yachts were rolling off the assembly line the gas crisis struck, making Americans rethink their passion for huge cars.

This is a website you can get lost in.

This is a huge collection of vintage advertisements, photographs, book and magazine covers and publicity stills. 

Lots of retro goodness, in high-resolution, courtesy of Ultra Swank, a groovy website that celebrates all things retro. 

Dark Roasted Blend

This is an amazing website with posts on all sorts of cool subjects: science, retro-futurism, gadgets, photography, steampunk, you name it. You can lose hours of time on this site.

DRB has a great post about the evolution of cameras, with some great pictures of interesting cameras. Check out the post HERE.

Another great post is a collection of superb photographs from the 1930s, like the one on the left. These are some remarkable images! Click HERE to see the collection.

Make sure to check out the site; it's an amazing resource for artists, photographers, writers, and of course, bloggers.

Another fantastic website, this one has huge collections of vintage photos and documents from just about every era in which stuff was printed or photographed.

Be a Retronaut today!

Awful postcards are a hoot, and this site has 'em, in spades. Every day there is a new bad postcard that makes you wonder what was going through the mind of the person who thought, "Yeah, THAT image is compelling! We'll use THAT one!"

A good example is the one below, from Napanee, Ontario, in Canada. Not only is there nothing remotely inviting about this motel based on the postcard, but the street light pole makes the M look like a N, spelling NOTEL. Umm, you couldn't have taken one step to the side before taking the picture...?? This isn't a postcard, it's a crime scene photograph.

This is a French site that has a ton of kitschy, retro postcards of French towns, staged pictures of kids, men, women, couples, dogs and cats, and retro pinups. The clothing and style of photography is pure vintage, and visiting this site is like stumbling onto your Aunt Maude's huge postcard collection.

One of my favorite sites, updated every week, with another really bad example of an independent comic, or one with a weird, hokey or just plain awful story line.

The comments are utterly hilarious and this is one site you won't want to miss. 

This panel is from a series of McDonald's comic books starring the familiar orange-headed clown. 

The caption from this panel: Ronald's just a regular guy who wears a clown suit and a red wig and hangs out in the neighborhood joining in the wagon races. Perfectly normal.

There are loads of awful comics on this site, all with hilarious commentary. Make sure youi check it out!

This is a cool blog with lots of pictures, magazine covers and images of a future that never was. Space stations, weird inventions, images pf a fantastic future imagined in days long gone, it's all here. Step into this cool wayback machine.

No comments: