Ah, Butters and I are so sad! And yet happy too. My son and his girlfriend Abby just departed the environs of Keuka Lake, bound, via Waukesha, for their very full lives in Oshkosh where Xander is a business major about to begin an internship for a large Wisconsin corporation, and Abby is a pre-med. Xander is specializing in marketing and I think he's going to be good at it. Xander's Dad enjoyed their short visit immensely. Butters and Lulu too. Among many other things, we christened my new Mennonite-made card table, and they introduced me to a fast-moving game I'd never played before called "Palace," which evidently originated in Finland as "Paskahousu." It seems to have a nice mix of luck and strategy, which is kinda what you want in a card game. I liked it.
While I was enjoying my vacation, various readers wrote with suggestions of things we need to catch up on. Ed Kuipers sent this first one:
• At TIME Lightbox, Stephen Mayes writes about the future of photography. He analogizes the whole history of the medium up to digital as "childhood," and characterizes the digital transition as "puberty." (Which seems like it trivializes either photography or puberty, I don't know.) He says photography as we knew it is not dead but is "gone." "It will not be long before our audiences demand more sophisticated imagery that is dynamic and responsive to change, connected to reality by more than a static two-dimensional rectangle of crude visual data isolated in space and time." Um...connected to reality, or virtuality?
• The Denver Post has published a nice selection of AFP's Pictures of the Year 2015. James Erlandson counted nine cameras in picture no. 13.
Devoted (her word!) TOP reader Yvonne Cunnington sent us a shot her Christmas gift to her husband, nicely framed in their living room. She says they've spent time in Paris recently, and "the picture is a great
souvenir of our stays there."
• Gerry O'Brien came across a website containing mid-20th century photos by a long-dead gentleman, Frank Larson. Frank's son discovered a box of negatives recently, and has begun scanning them and posting them online. If you like noirish Midcentury B&W (as I do) you'll love these.
• I can't watch "Vic Invades"—seriously, I haven't watched it and I'm not going to—but Jeffrey Goggin did, and you might not be as squeamish as I am about heights! But as the old expression goes, please don't try that at home. Er....
• Author of many great comments through the years, reader Ed Hawco writes, "You may or may not be aware of a current film called 'Carol' starring Kate Blanchette. It's set in the early 1950s and is very beautifully shot, using some unusual visual palettes. While I was watching it with my sweetie a few nights ago she leaned over and said 'Saul Leiter,' and she is bang on. Views through rain splattered windows, muted colors with bright pops of red, etc. It turns out the director, Todd Haynes, very deliberately evoked the period by borrowing from some of the photographers of the era—primarily Leiter—specifically seeking to avoid the conventional way we think of those times in retrospect, such as the always sparklingly clean interiors we saw in 'Mad Men.' This article in the New Statesman spells it out and links to some further reading. I suspect you'll enjoy that quick read, and if you get a chance to see the film I highly recommend it." Thanks for that, Ed—I will put it on the list.
If I'm not very much mistaken, we are about to launch 2016. I still can't believe 2012 has arrived, much less 2015. And here they're both gone already. But the past couple of years for me have been wholehearted and adventurous. Here's to you and the people you love, and, from my household to yours, may you have a sweet '16.
(Thanks to all the people I already thanked)
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