Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Greyish - Thematic Photography

When I saw the theme was greyish I immediately thought of battleship grey.

HMS Illustrious - 1940 Aircraft Carrier  
This photo comes from my brother's photos taken during WWII. He served on the Illustrious in the Mediterranean  and may have been aboard when Swordfish aircraft from the carrier attacked the Italian fleet at Taranto.

Swordfish (I think)

Seaplanes also flew off carriers but this one seems to have lost its way.

Grounded - Supermarine Walrus
To add a bit of colour to our greyish theme I'll change to grey and green,

13th Century Parish Church, St Mawgan, Cornwall
Dedicated to St Mauganus and St Nicholas

St Mauganus was a Welshman so I'm told.

In North Yorkshire the best preserved ruins of a Cistercian monastery are those of Fountains Abbey.

Fountains Abbey, North Yorkshire
I have nearly 40 photos of the Abbey but for this greyish theme you will have to be satisfied with one.

For other grey matters you need to pay a visit to Carmi's thematic photographic 185

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Castles - Sunday Stamps

Back in 1955 this set of four stamps was issued.

Castle Stamps (1955) 
(Scanned from an old catalogue)

30 years later on the 18th October 1988 the Post Office released four new high value stamps featuring the same castle. These are the ones I have in my collection or so I thought.

Castle Stamps
The castles came  four different regions of Great Britain ; Carrickfergus (Northern Ireland), Caernarfon (Wales), Edinburgh (Scotland) and Windsor (England). The 1988 stamps had been based on photographs taken by Prince Andrew, Duke of York and were engraved and printed by Harrison and Sons Limited

Four years later in 1992 the set was re-released with enhanced security features. The original Queen's head was changed to a silhouette and an elliptical perforation was added half way up the sides of the stamp.If you look at my stamps you can see both the silhouette and the elliptical perforation

By 1995 inflation had taken its toll and the £1 Carrickfergus Castle design was replaced by a £1 stamp of the standard low-value Machin design. The Carrickfergus Castle was re-released as a £3 high value in 22nd August 1995. My stamps include both the £1 and £3 denominations

In 1997, the contract for printing the stamps was moved to Enschedé.  Enschedé had to re-engrave each design. Although the general appearance of the stamp barely changed, the individual engraving marks were completely different,

Apparently you can distinguish between the two printers by examining the letters 'C' and 'S' in the word 'Castle' where there are differences in the lower point of the 'C' and the lower tail of the 'S'. This is difficult to see on my scanned images. The £1 Carrickfergus must  be pre-1995 and be by Harrison and Sons. 

There is no doubt about the Windsor Castle stamp being by Enschedé because their design has the 'W' looking as if it comprises overlapping 'V's.

The sad thing to me is that these lovely castle stamps were discontinued and replaced in 1999 by small format Machins just showing the Queen's head.

As you may gather participating in Sunday Stamps this week has taught me things I didn't know about my stamps. Now you may check out others choices at Viridian's Sunday Stamps-59

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Shoes - Sepia Saturday

I have never understood all the fuss about shoes (our theme for this week); they say you should put your best foot forward so I guess its a case of:

Yarm shop
This led to a bout of window shopping for shoes (female of course).

Buckles & Bows, Yarm
And the appropriately named -

The Shoe Box,Yarm
This shop is in a narrow wynd; its other window looks like this -

The Show Box window
The dress shop round the corner on the High Street sells shoes as well.

Shoe Stripes
These looked decidedly elegant compared with a shop in Stockton which was as empty as it looked.

Shoe Zone, Stockton
Not at all attracted to this I decided to look back in history and rejoiced in finding this 'gallant.'

Pepys & Lady Batten
By James Digman Winfield - 1861

The Diary of Samuel Pepys for Wednesday 15 November 1665 reads in part: "Up and all the morning at the office, busy, and at noon to the King’s Head taverne, where all the Trinity House dined to-day, to choose a new Master in the room of Hurlestone, that is dead, and Captain Crispe is chosen. But, Lord! to see how Sir W. Batten governs all and tramples upon Hurlestone, but I am confident the Company will grow the worse for that man’s death, for now Batten, and in him a lazy, corrupt, doating rogue, will have all the sway there. After dinner who comes in but my Lady Batten, and a troop of a dozen women almost, and expected, as I found afterward, to be made mighty much of, but nobody minded them; but the best jest was, that when they saw themselves not regarded, they would go away, and it was horrible foule weather; and my Lady Batten walking through the dirty lane with new spicke and span white shoes, she dropped one of her galoshes in the dirt, where it stuck, and she forced to go home without one, at which she was horribly vexed, and I led her; and after vexing her a little more in mirth, I parted..."

In Edwardian times there were other delights:

High Heels 1910-1917

By Jean Agelou (1878-1921) - source

I'd better stop at this point before I develop a high (heeled) fetish and return to what I posted recently under Pairs. 

Spare pair of shoes up street lamp in Norwich, Norfolk
(by Keith Evans -- CC A-SA 2.0 license)
But my favourite shoes will always be these  that you've seen before.
Sam worn out by gardening
OK they may be boots but

So perhaps you should walk right over to Sepia Saturday 114 and choose some more shoes.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Curved - Thematic Photography

I've looked for different shapes than when we did Curves here in January last year.

Should you visit Cornwall there two places I recommend you see. First:

The Eden Project
How many curved items can you find?

Cornwall's cathedral is also not to be missed.

Truro Cathedral
And here's some curved furniture inside a Cornish home.

Curved chairbacks; curved sideboard
Moving to the USA I found this statue in Michigan.

Rochester, Michigan
I'll let you check out what's curved.

Meanwhile back in mainland Europe there's two curved places to check up on -

Planetarium - Bochum, Germany
Gardens in Monaco
Perhaps I'll finish gracefully nearer home.

Mount  Grace Priory, North Yorkshire
Now it's time for you to get behind the curved ball with our host at Carmi's Written Inc 184

Monday, 20 February 2012

Rotterdam's Delftsche Poort

My booklet of postcards by Weenenk& Snel included this photo:

Delftsche Poort

It is interesting to compare this with another older view.

Delftsche Poort - 1898
Viewed from the city, near the River Schie

There is a very depressing picture of what happened to this old city gate on 14 May 1940  here

I can find no later photos so it looks a though it no longer exists. Perhaps someone could let me know.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Cats and Dogs - Sunday Stamps

Apologies for missing out last week but I had no stamps to show other than those from Valentines you saw last year.

Dogs have featured on a number of my stamps that you've seen already and you might remember dogs and horses here

This time I looked for cats and remembering Blake's 'Tyger, Tyger burning bright - In the forests of the night,' I came up with these:

Malaya - Perak
It may be stretching it a bit to class tigers as pets especially if you keep goats.

For other chosen pets, cats, dogs - whatever visit Viridian's sunday stamps 58

Friday, 17 February 2012

Who's in the chair? - Sepia Saturday

No film stars for me this week. I had to visit a local market stall to find the subject for this week.

There's no doubt that it's a man, but who?

Newcastle man
He's still unknown but the back of the CdV helps a bit.

Photo Art Studios
I've managed to track down a member of the Royal Photographic Society, one Edward Lyddell Sawyer (1856/1927). He was living in Newcastle  in the 1880s/1900s and more importantly was the son of Henry Sawyer (1830/1896) who was described as 'Portrait Painter & Photographer.'

I have been less succesfull with my next man on a cabinet card.

Photographer - P Crane & Co, Swiss Art Studio, Bishop Auckland
Again I have been unable to name the man in the chair; the card has seen better days but I was pleased to  see something of a match between the table legs and those on Alan's chair.

To find out who has memories of film follow the finger pointing you to Sepia Saturday 113

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Pairs - Thematic Photography

OH dear where to start when totally devoid of ideas and no chance to find pairs outside! What better place than this:

Hydroxide Lone Pair
(By Benjah-bmm 27)

For those who wonder what it is, in chemistry this represents the hydroxide ion (I think).

My next pair or two were right before my eyes.

Spectacles and scissors.
Here's a well thumbed pair that have seen better days.

Two pairs
Someone must have bet more than their shirt on those to end up like this.

Too shy to model pants, socks and gloves
Look what happened to his shoes.

Spare pair of shoes up street lamp in Norwich, Norfolk
(by Keith Evans -- CC A-SA 2.0 license)

I just hope that he didn't finance his gambling habit by pawning these.

Earings - three pairs.
Well I guess it's time to stop monkeying around.

Add caption
and for you to pair off at Carmi's Written Inc 183

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Bridges Over River Maas - Rotterdam

In May 1940 the bridges over the River Maas at Rotterdam were the scene of fierce WWII battles between Dutch and German troops. The bridges appear on my Weenenk & Snel postcards from the early 1900s.

Bridges over the River Maas
I also located another photo of the bridges from between 1890 and 1905.

Bridges over the River Meuse (French) - River Maas (Dutch)
(US Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division, Photochrom Prints Collection)

Friday, 10 February 2012

Pushkin His Luck

In 1829, aged 30, Aleaxander Pushkin fell in love with a 16 year old girl named Natalya. They married two years later.

Pushkin was the famous author of Eugene Onegin in which there is a clear depiction of Natalya as 'Tatyana.' According to gossip Natalya was having an affair with a dashing Frenchman, Baron Georges d'Anthès whom the Pushkins had met in 1834. D'Anthès was to marry Natalya's sister.

In 1836 Pushkin received a poison pen letter electing him to 'The Serene Order of Cuckolds.'  Whether or not the charge was baseless, Pushkin decided to play out the script of Eugene Onegin where the hero is provoked into a duel over Tatyana.

The monument on Pushkin's duel place, Saint-Petersburg
Photo by Vladimir Ivanov

The duel between Pushkin and d'Anthès took place on 27 January 1837. D'Anthès fired and wounded Puskin; Pushkin merely winged his opponent. Pushkin was fatally hurt and died eventually on this day in 1837.

  • The Times records Pushkin's death on 10 February 1837 in its 'On This Day' column of The Register.
  • Love, Sex, Death & Words, surprising tales from a year in literature - 10 February- 'The king of cuckolds dies.' Authors  John Sutherland & Stephen Fender.  Icon Books

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Groceries - Thematic Photography

With the advent of supermarkets and out of town shopping centres grocers' shops have disappeared from many villages and towns in the UK. So to remind you of how it used to be I'm posting this shop from Australia.

Date c. 1910
John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Interior of Dalton Brothers Grocery Shop in Ipswich, ca. 1910 Grocers and provision merchants situated on Nicholas Street. Well-stocked shop with seating available for shoppers while their orders are being made up. Household goods such as teapots and cooking utensils as well as consumables.

The nearest I could get was a greengrocer's that I have shown before when the theme was vegetables.
Yarm greengrocer's shop
As I refuse to photograph a supermarket I have had to settle for a collection of groceries in our kitchen.

This led to a discussion about just what are classed as groceries. I decided to ignore items like toilet rolls, cleaning fluids, soap - the list is endless and just rearrange the above display with a few new items added.

Now I think it's time to open that bottle of wine while you go off to to the grocery checkout at Carmi's Written Inc. thematic-photographic 182