Thursday, October 31, 2019

Greatest Graveyards for Halloween

Appealing to my darker side, whenever I go to a new city, I typically seek out an old cemetery or two. I love the artistry of the historic headstones; mixed with the ravages of time, they provide a means of storytelling for the ages. The first two shots here are from the Granary Burying Ground in Boston. Skulls were a typical design element for tombstones.

From Kings Chapel Burying Ground, also in Boston:

Hollywood Forever may not compare in age to Boston, but it definitely controls the market on kitsch. Where else could you have a Lady in Black who delivers roses to an idol she has never met? Such is the power of silent screen star Rudolph Valentino who died all too young in 1926.

Once known as Calvary Cemetery, Pioneer Park in San Diego still has all the dead bodies buried below the ground...but all the headstones removed and dumped in a ravine, save for a handful that were deemed important by the City back in the 1970s. The select few were moved to the back of the park and re-installed so as to have more space for the park itself. Can you say Poltergeist?

Springwood Cemetery in Greenville was a cool discovery for me; you just never know what creepy or sad little figures you’ll see on a headstone.

Old Santa Rosa Chapel is another favorite; small, quaint, peaceful, and rich with history.

St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 in New Orleans has the future resting place of Nicolas Cage:

Most know about Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah; Laurel Grove is its lesser known counterpart:

I hope you all have a fun (yet safe!) Halloween!

See more Graveyard photos at my main website.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Love On A Haystack

I recently watched the 1934 Oscar winning classic, “It Happened One Night.” Regardless of the film’s age, it still holds up today, with an almost magical quality to its lighting. The sequence captured in today’s first shot still takes my breath away. While the photograph does not quite capture what the actual film does, it still makes a valiant effort of showing the way the lighting hit the haystacks and its stars to their best advantage. Who would have thought a love scene filmed in a rural field could be so dreamlike? The film’s Cinematography was ably handled by Joseph Walker, who was also the Director of Photography for “It’s A Wonderful Life.”

An interesting article I found online talks about this specific scene. Due to a meager budget, Walker was forced to be extra creative on this movie. Balking at his assignment of filming the night love scene during the day (aka Day-For-Night) on location with fake haystacks (straw glued to canvas-covered frames), Walker still pulled through and shot one of those most beautiful love scenes in movie history. Instead of shooting outdoors and battling sunlight, he staged the scene inside of a circus tent. Who knew?

This hand-tinted vintage lobby card was actually shot outdoors, attempting to replicate the mood of the scene shot in the tent:

While it is obviously staged and posed to the hilt, this vintage publicity shot probably captures the visual effect of the scene best, where sunlight and Hollywood lighting stood in for magical moonlight.

Claudette Colbert could not have been more wrong when she made this statement after filming ended:

“I just finished the worst picture in the world.”

I hope she enjoyed her Best Actress Oscar!

See more Classic Movie photos at my main website.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Temple Tuesday: Temple on the Telly

Today’s post is entirely thanks to Shirley Expert Supreme, Rita Dubas. Once again, her boundless generosity has provided me with amazing content to entertain my readers. The first photo shows Shirley with a white Automatic Electric Monophone Model 34 Telephone in her bedroom. Known as the “Shirley Temple phone,” the AE34 models that were bought by the general public came in black, not white.

From the Telephone Museum website:

On This Day In Telephone History August 23RD 1938 Shirley Temple Receives The 100,000TH AE Model 34. The Associated Telephone Company, Ltd. Installed the 100,000TH AE 34 at the home of the most famous little girl in all the world, Shirley Temple. Henceforth, the Automatic Electric Monophone Model 34 Became known as “The Shirley Temple Phone.”

Rita’s original photo above is dated August 15, 1938 (about a week before the phone museum page said it was presented to her). Here’s a shot of the black phone made of Bakelite that was available to the public:

Moving forward to 1959, Shirley made Telephone History once again by being the millionth General Telephone Company of California customer. The company was headquartered in Santa Monica and presented Shirley with this phone in a special ceremony. I was able to see this memento in 2018 when Shirley’s family loaned it to the Santa Monica History Museum and put it on display:

Shirley’s son Charlie mentioned that there was an inscription on the bottom of the phone; unfortunately with the way it was displayed I couldn’t get a clear enough shot to be able to read the engraving.

Want to see a photo of Shirley using that phone? Thanks to Rita, you can! Shot by Baron Wolman in 1976, Shirley was still using the 1959 phone some seventeen years later. And why not? Those old phones were built to last!

She also supplied this article from the August 23, 1982 GTE (General Telephone Company) California News. Well, maybe this particular phone wasn’t built to last, but at least it seemed to have a VERY good warranty! Try not to gag when you read the extremely flowery language of this article.

See more Shirley Temple Black photos at my main website.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Portland Adventures: The Heathman

The first time I went to Portland, Oregon was back in 2003, when I stayed at the Heathman Hotel. Back then I was still shooting with film. When I returned there earlier this month, I had a few locations on my list to update with “new and improved” shots, using not only a digital camera, but one that doesn't need a flash. I once loved flash photography because it showed EVERYTHING; I grew to loathe it as I matured because it changes natural lighting AND blows out everything in the foreground. In comparing the neon sign at the Heathman from 2003 to present day, it would appear that the entire marquee has been changed.

Even the interiors have been transformed. The once ornate and slightly Asian influenced Art Deco lobby…

is now simplified in what I would call 21st Century Hotel Chic.

The library/sitting room located near the lobby was once dark, serious, and rich in woodwork…

is still paneled, but looks much larger and brighter.

I believe the fireplace screen is the same:

Even if you don’t stay at the Heathman, make sure you check out Headwaters, the Hotel Restaurant. The food is DELISH!

See more Portland, Oregon photos at my main website.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Going to Guides: Daveland's Greatest Hits

If you’re a Disney Park fanatic, then the Going to Guides book series is a must have. Why, you ask? Because they are well designed, have loads of helpful information about the Parks, and most importantly: the are illustrated with my photography! Shannon Laskey, the author, is getting ready to update the Disneyland book and will be adding even more of my photos. Today’s post features a sampling of some of those images. It was fun to go through the archives and see some of these photos again, bringing up a lot of good memories. The first shot is of the Mr. Toad attraction exterior at night, followed by an interior view of it’s a small world (the holiday version).

I am an early riser, which sure helps in getting those crowd-free shots at the Park. Main Street, U.S.A. is the most difficult to get without a lot of guests stampeding to Fantasyland, but thanks to a quick pace upon opening, I was able to get this one of the Candy Palace:

…and the Jolly Holiday bakery:

How about this one of Toontown? Patience is a virtue, waiting for a shot to be guest-free.

Waterfalls can make for very interesting pictures, whether you use a fast shutter speed to make them razor sharp, or a super slow one to capture a milk-like effect. On this one from Toontown, I chose the latter.

If you go there right at opening, Frontierland is fairly easy to get a clear shot without any crowds.

I had forgotten about this Jungle Cruise dock panorama, but was sure pleased to be reminded about it!

Last one for today is the one I am probably most proud of: Sleeping Beauty Castle at night:

Thanks to Shannon for using my photos and causing this trip down Memory Lane for me!

See more Disneyland photos at my main website.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Savannah: Then and Now

A few then and now shots for one of my favorite cities, Savannah Georgia. The first photo is from August 1966 and shows the historic Chatham County Courthouse on Wright Square. Built in 1889, the Architect was William G. Preston.

Uh oh...somebody’s getting a ticket! Who says the old days were all fun and games?

The building was used until the 1970s when a new courthouse was built. Today it is used for administrative and legislative offices. And can you believe with ALLLLLLLLLLL my trips to Savannah I apparently do not have one single shot of the entire building? Well, it’s true. You’ll have to settle for the clock tower; Doc Brown and Marty are probably around here somewhere.

One of my favorite Savannah restaurants is the Olde Pink House; in February 1964 it was known as the Georgian Tea Room:

Let’s get a better look at the signage:

And a contemporary shot; it looks more pink!

The Greek Revival style Philbrick-Eastman House was designed in 1844 by antebellum architect Charles B. Cluskey on Savannah’s Chippewa Square and was known as “the finest home in the city.” Extensively renovated in the 1950’s to create commercial office space, this August 1966 image shows it being inhabited by the The Atlantic Mutual Fire Insurance Company.

A closeup of one of the vintage cars parked nearby:

A 2015 rehabilitation project made way for this historic property to accommodate The Parker Companies corporate offices. Here’s a contemporary shot from 2013:

See more Savannah, Georgia photos at my main website.