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Saturday, 25 July 2009


"...when my father was a Director of NASA"!! You've never dropped THAT little hint before, Mike! As a kid, did you get to do any cool stuff, like ride in the C-130 "vomit comet", or meet any astronauts? Or did you just never get to see your Dad?

Regarding Astronaut Bruce McCandless, shown in that 1984 photograph above: We've all heard his voice - he was CapCom during the Apollo 11 moon walk. See: http://history.nasa.gov/alsj/a11/a11.html

Actually I think I have mentioned my father's NASA connection before, but we're coming up on 35,000 comments on the blog so I won't blame you if you don't have every single one memorized [s]. He was Director for Space Applications under Jerry Ford. As I recall there was an overall head of the agency, who was called the Administrator, and six Directors underneath him. The Administrator's name in that era was Jim Fletcher, and he was a cabinet-level appointee. My father's position was a presidential appointment, but one tier below cabinet level. He did survive into the Carter Administration, but not very far.

Aside from having astronauts to the house for dinner now and then and getting some cool insider tours of NASA facilities (I was especially interested in LANDSAT imaging and satellite lenses), about the only thing I remember is that my father had a pass that allowed us to skip the lines at the Air & Space Museum, which was new at the time and the hottest ticket on the National Mall. I think I saw the first Air & Space IMAX films a dozen times, with VIP treatment all the way. [g]

All a long time ago now.


You're absolutely right about Shulman and Shorpy. For me the real treat is the color version of his most famous photo--Case Study House No. 22 (the Stahl house, by Pierre Koenig).

The B&W version we're used to seeing:

Glorious early '60s color:

The two color images by Walker Evans are wonderful, as is the one you show by Eugene Smith. One only wishes that they did more in color . . . .

All the bits and bobs that are on web pages and that now float in to the images being displayed such as arrows, navigation menus and watermarks are no where near as bad as having a large photo placed across 2 pages in a magazine like National Geographic. This has always irritated me beyond belief as you have to destroy the magazine to get a true sense of the composition of the photo. This is a huge benefit to viewing images on the web and I will never understand why magazines especially NG would do that to there photos other then they only ever look at the layout and never the actual magazine.

Richard, one reason I use "Zinio Reader" no gutter on a full page spread. On the 30" monitor the images are beautiful 90% of the time--some great foreign magazines on there dealing with photography. It's nice to look at a 16X20 image. "Zinio" is a great way to go for Photo and Picture magazines.
No National Geographic yet.

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