Thursday, March 27, 2014

Iconic to you...

...or the masses.  We all have these images. We've seen them in books, at museums, found them in a pile somewhere, etc.  Some you've even produced yourself and others by friends. Lately I've been making an effort to compile the images I really enjoy into some sort of order.  Some of them I own and others are taken from the world wide web.

Jerome Liebling - Bemidji, MN 1950

Proctor Academy - Andover, NH

Jules Aarons

Mine - date/info unknown

Atlantic City, NJ - 1925

Atlantic City, NJ - August 1953

Art Rickerby - Boston, MA 1962

Didier Ru - Bronx Zoo

Installing the sign at George's Coney Island Hot Dogs - Worcester, MA 1951

David Plowden - 1968

Drahotin Sulla - 1920’s

Elliott Erwitt - New York City 1969

Truro, MA - 1952

Sioux City, IA - 1975-76

Note: I've tried to include any information I know about each image. If you happen to have any info where I don't-- feel free to post it in the comments.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

When cutting and pasting meant cutting and pasting...

Today we can all relate to the copy/cut and paste shortcut keystrokes of the digital age, but this post is the opposite of that. The late Buddy Esquire was the grass roots pioneer of copy, cutting and pasting marquis art deco style hip hop flyers that helped weave the techno funky fresh fabric of hip hop in the early days. Buddy Esquire had a trademark style that was clean,and classy yet still funky and raw at the same time. In todays world everyone is an amazing graphic designer, letter smith, artist, illustrator etc. and in my opinion it is largely due to the accessibility for resource and inspiration via the internet. In the early days it was hard work to research and find inspiration, and not to mention all the labor was done manually before it went to the copy machine were it was finalized. When I heard the Buddy Esquire had passed I took the time to look up his portfolio of work, and it really made me think of how far the world has come from and amore importantly hip hop itself has evolved into such a technolgical industry. For over half of my life I have been into the study of lettering, design, and more importantly hip hop and its sub cultures, I wanted to pay homage to someone who paved the way and inspired myself and many others to carry on the traditions of style, and class. REST IN PEACE.....BUDDY ESQUIRE

Friday, January 10, 2014

Cotton Country USA

An overdue post here I had held off making because I thought I would be back another time when it was actually open, but I've been back twice and the place has been closed both times. Over a year ago now work took me to Santee, SC- about an hour southeast of Columbia, SC and just off 95. I had an afternoon to kill and spent it driving around checking the area out-- mostly farmland and predominately cotton from what I saw.  I don't know much about cotton but I'm assuming it was harvesting time, all the crops were full and in some areas cotton would drift along to the edges of the road as you drove by. I came up to what looked like a restaurant- Lone Star BBQ & Mercantile.  Clearly closed, not a car or person in sight.  The place consisted of 4 buildings all adjoining one another and all with different signs above the entrances.  I got out and started taking photos of the place and all the old odds and ends around the property. As I'm doing this a pickup truck pulls into the parking lot an old guy hops out and asks me what I'm doing there.  After it was clear that I was interested in the buildings and their history he stuck out his hand and said, "I'm Pat Williams I own the place."  He told me to help me carry some boxes inside and he'd open the whole place up for me to check out. I did and it was well worth it- he let me wander around and answered any questions I had.

The 4 buildings were all their own separate general type stores in their past, operating throughout the surrounding counties and they were brought to the current location to open the restaurant/gift type general store.  Back when they were in operation these stores offered goods & postal services for locals as well as people passing through with the railroad.  I found a video on youtube with Pat talking outside the place.  It's at the bottom of the post here and he gets into much more detail.

Some things really stuck out to me-  I asked Pat if he was a collector and he said no and that all the contents of the buildings had either come with them from their original locations or were given to him. He let me know that everything was original then pointing at a replica Indian motorcycle sign he said- Thats not, but a friend who raced Indians years ago gave it to me. Fair enough. The Coca Cola painted advertisement on the side of the one building (2 pictures of it below)-- The engineer was painted to the likeness of the original store owner back in the time he owned it.  This made a boring afternoon not so boring and when your traveling all over by yourself its experiences like this that make it pretty enjoyable.