vintage, nostalgia and memories


September 24, 2017

47 Incredible Colorized Photos That Show Everyday Life of Japan in the Late 19 Century

In 1881, after working for many years with the European photographers Felice Beato and Baron Raimund von Stillfried as a photographic colourist and assistant, the Japanese photographer Kusakabe Kimbei (1841-1934) finally opened his own workshop in the Benten-dōri quarter of Yokohama, and soon established himself as one of the most respected and successful Japanese photographers of his generation.

Kimbei opened another studio in Yokohama's Honmachi quarter in 1889, and also a branch in the Ginza quarter of Tokyo. The selection here is from the collection held by The Getty in Los Angeles, focusing mostly on work from the early part of Kimbei's career.

These hand-colored photographs of Kusakabe Kimbei that show everyday life of Japan in the late 19th century.

Kago travelling chair

Kioto dancing girl

Maker and repairer of Samisens

Mother and child

Peony garden



Vintage Photos of a Giant Pyramid of Captured German Helmets From WWI in New York, ca. 1918

Pyramid of German helmets near Grand Central Terminal : black-and-white photoprint, ca. 1918.

Closeup of Pyramid

Though kind of macabre, to celebrate the end of World War I in 1918, this massive pyramid was constructed near Grand Central Terminal using the helmets of captured and killed German soldiers. The label on the back of the original photograph says:
"View of the employees of the New York Central / Railroad, assembled in Victory Way, showing the pyramid of captured / German helmets, with Grand Central Terminal in / the background." Two cannons are shown at the left and right.
There must be over a thousand pointed helmets in that stack, and despite all that the Germans did, celebrating the death of that many people just seems wrong.

(via Viewing NYC)

14 Beautiful Black and White Photos of Kim Basinger in 1977

An over shy young girl, Kim Basinger studied dance and entered beauty pageants as a teenager, confronting the eyes of a public. She was rapidly offered a contract with Ford Agency and became a successful model in New York before moving to Los Angeles in 1976 and focusing on acting.

She landed a number of small parts at first, making guest appearances on such shows as Charlie's Angels. In 1978, Basinger starred in the TV movie Katie: Portrait of a Centerfold. She portrayed Lorene Rogers in the miniseries From Here to Eternity in 1979 and its short-lived spin-off series the following year.

Basinger made her film debut in the 1981 western drama Hard Country with Jan-Michael Vincent. Two years later, her career started to skyrocket with Never Say Never Again starring Sean Connery. Basinger became the latest actress to play a "Bond girl," a love interest for super spy James Bond. More major film projects soon followed, including 9 1/2 Weeks with Mickey Rourke and Batman with Michael Keaton.








Body Armor of the First World War, 1914-1918

During the First World War, the size and scale of some of the weaponry produced devastating wounds and losses on soldiers. In order to provide some protection to the men in the front lines, armies explored the possibility of providing them with different types of armor.


Soldiers in the British army at the outbreak of the war were not provided with much in the way of protective clothing. The British military uniform for the time was made of hard-wearing brown khaki which did, at least, provide a measure of camouflage in the fields of France and Belgium but was not designed to provide any protection to the body of the wearer.

The British and French armies began to equip men with steel helmets in 1915 in a bid to protect the heads, one of the most vulnerable parts of the body in trench warfare, of their men from falling debris and glancing blows from bullets or shrapnel. Despite the utility of these helmets, they still left something to be desired. The German-designed Stahlhelm provided better protection to both the head and the shoulders of their soldiers. These helmets became so synonymous with the German army that allied nations proved reluctant to design similar headwear in case it led to confusion in the trenches.

A German member of a “Trench Attack Squad” poses in steel body armor and two stick grenades. The armor, capable of stopping a pistol round but only superficially helpful against rifle fire, also helped protecting against bayonet and other edged weapons thrusts.

A soldier wear body armour made of linked steel plates covering his chest and abdomen, ca. 1914.

A suit of heavy body armour used by the Americans in France, ca. 1917.

American soldier trying on captured German body armor, 1918.

A man models a steel helmet covered with a built-on chain screen to protect a soldier's eyes from rocks, shells and other fragments during World War I. It was created by E J Codd Company of Baltimore, Maryland.



Ageless Beauty of India: 26 Glamorous Photos of Madhubala in the Early 1950s

Born Mumtaz Jehan Begum Dehlavi, Indian film actress Madhubala (1933-1969) appeared in classic films of Hindi cinema from between 1942 and 1962, and is considered the most iconic female celebrity of Hindi cinema.


Madhubala is also to be one of the most beautiful actresses to have worked in the industry, and an iconic actress of Hindi Cinema. In their feature of her, Life magazine called her "the biggest star" in the international film industry.

Take a look at these glamorous photos to see the beauty of young Madhubala from the early 1950s.








September 23, 2017

Behind-the-Scenes of Marilyn Monroe’s Iconic Flying Skirt Photo While Filming ‘The Seven Year Itch’

There are hundreds of photos of Marilyn Monroe, one of Hollywood’s most iconic stars, but the most famous photo of all was shot on September 15, 1954 by photographer Sam Shaw on the set of Seven Year Itch. However, there is more to the story than that, including why she faced the photographer and posed the way she did.


In the early 1950s, Sam Shaw was working in the film industry as a stills photographer. While on the set of biopic Viva Zapata! in 1951, he met Monroe, who at the time was a struggling actress employed on contract at the 20th Century Fox studios. Shaw couldn’t drive and Monroe, then the girlfriend of the film’s director Elia Kazan, was asked to give him a lift to the film set every day.

Shaw and Monroe developed a close friendship. She called him ‘Sam Spade’, a reference to the fictional private detective created by Dashiell Hammett. Soon he began photographing her in informal portraits that captured her playful personality. Shaw said, ‘I just want to show this fascinating woman, with her guard down, at work, at ease off-stage, during joyous moments in her life and as she 
often was – alone.’

By 1954, when Monroe was chosen for the lead role in Billy Wilder’s comedy The Seven Year Itch, she was on the way to becoming a major star. She was 28 years old and had played lead roles in films such as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and How to Marry a Millionaire (both released in 1953). She had married her second husband, baseball star Joe DiMaggio, in January that year

In The Seven Year Itch, Monroe played the glamorous neighbour with whom middle-aged publishing executive Richard Sherman, played by Tom Ewell, becomes infatuated. At one point in the script, Monroe and Ewell stroll through a New York street and walk over a subway grate.

Sam Shaw and Marilyn Monroe, backstage at 20th Century Fox studio, Los Angeles, California, 1954. (Photo © Sam Shaw Inc.)

When reading the dialogue for this scene, Shaw saw the opportunity to use an idea he’d had several years earlier. He had been visiting the amusement park on Coney Island when he saw women exiting a ride and having their skirts blown upwards by a blast of air coming from below ground. He suggested to producer Charles Feldman that this scene could provide a set-piece poster image for the film, with a blast of air from the grate blowing Monroe’s dress in the air.

The movie scene was originally shot outside the Trans-Lux Theatre on Lexington Avenue, at around 2am. Despite the shoot’s timing, a crowd gathered to watch. Monroe was wearing a white pleated halterneck dress. A wind machine underneath the grate sent the dress billowing up above her waist, revealing her legs. As the scene was re-shot, the crowd became increasingly boisterous.

At the publicity stunt in New York, a large crowd of bystanders and press were invited to create hype around the filming. (Photo © Sam Shaw Inc.)

After the filming had finished, Shaw arranged for the moment to be recreated in a press photocall. Photographers including Magnum’s Elliott Erwitt stood around her as the dress was again blown upwards. Shaw, having organised the event, secured himself the best position to record it. As Monroe posed with her dress flying high, she turned to face him and said, ‘Hey, Sam Spade!’ He pressed the shutter on his Rolleiflex.

The iconic image of Marilyn Monroe was shot by photographer Sam Shaw during the filming of The Seven Year Itch. (Photo © Sam Shaw Inc.)

Shaw’s picture, with Monroe looking provocatively into his camera, is the best of the images from that shoot. The shots taken that night were published the next day in newspapers and magazines around the world. They not only brought great publicity for the film, but also cemented Monroe’s image as one of the sex symbols of the era.



Candid Photographs of Siouxsie and The Banshees in the Late 1970s

Siouxsie Sioux found fame with Siouxsie and The Banshees, the band she so-created with Steven Severin. Many pictures of Siouxsie Sioux and the rest of the group and their friends were taken by photographer Ray Stevenson, the brother of Nils Stevenson, who managed the band and was the Sex Pistols’ road manager .

These photos are the start of a legend, and they’re a glimpse into some of punk rock’s earliest memories. Below you’ll find pictures of Siouxsie captivating the shaggy late 70s crowds alongside her bandmates and other legends, like Sid Vicious, Adam Ant and other young people trying to make their creative voices heard and making history.









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