De’Ath & Condon vignette portrait

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Alaric Hawkins De’Ath operated a studio portrait at 32 Bank Street, Ashford (England), and from 1913 on partnered with Arthur James Condon. He passed in 1931. They may have taken this small vignette portrait during the Great War or after, and the sitter isn’t too shabby, is he? There is no name to aid IDing this fine English gent. We only hope he came out of those troubled years relatively unscathed.

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Against the rose curtain

 

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I enjoyed spending some time restoring this beautiful portrait. The original has a print defect and is sprinkled with black ink from the process. But fortunately Photoshop corrected these tiny imperfections to reveal this shot’s true beauty. I absolutely love the window and gorgeous rose curtain behind this young man, and the use of lights and dark to create chiaroscuro. And one cannot miss his eyes.

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With the belt, collared shirt and thin, straight tie I’d date this portrait from the late 1910s to early ’20s (if so, it was printed on older stock).

RPPC: AZO up triangles, 1904-1918


The same couple on two postcards

'Honey won't you love me like you used to.

‘Honey won’t you love me like you used to.” postcard. Private Collection.

Same woman, same (lovely) hairdo, different dress:

'Swinging was never like this'. Postcard. Private Collection.

Swinging was never like this. Postcard. Private Collection.

I’ve been collecting these postcards from the same series. I want to say they’re from the late 1910s. Two others, here (with the same hammock but different woman) and here with the same man.


As if catching his reflection in the oval mirror…

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1890’s-1900’s cabinet card. Private Collection.

This one gave me a chuckle. This gentleman looks like a deer in the headlights with his wide eyes. And with him looking partly off-shot, it gives the impression he just  came into view and got caught off guard by his own reflection.

On a side note, yes it’s been a month since I last posted, to the day. I didn’t realize it’s been this long. Like everything else in life there are periods when I actively collect (and feverishly so!) and others when I don’t so much.  However, the drought is soon to pass and I will be responding to emails today. ;)

 


Early Colombia Portrait Company button photograph

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Detail of 1890’s to early 1900’s button portrait. ©bahc/c.ryan

This portrait is a beautiful early example of tin buttons the Chicago based Columbia Portrait Company used to make. The three founders Thomas J. Ogara, Thomas J. Durkin, and C.M. Stumcke incorporated in 1893 and the company was successful for nearly half a century before closing its doors in 1940. The name of the company was inspired by the Chicago’s World Fair of 1893 where they must have made their introduction. They made fine oil reproduction portraits and framed button “bubble” photographs they then began to sell on the road across the country.

So let’s talk about this young gentleman. I believe his portrait is very likely the reproduction of a cabinet card/cdv/tintype. The picture is sharp  and he was dressed to impress. His tie stack is impressive too, is this a large gemstone set with smaller ones? (I’m tempted to say they’re diamonds). The button is a smooth matte; unlike the later celluloid examples I’ve seen which have a plasticity or “bubble” effect to them. This portrait looks more like a tintype. I wonder if the young man was at the fair and had it done then and there.

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The button portrait is 6 inches in diameter, not counting the brass frame with hook. The logo is at the back center.

When I saw this button portrait I knew I had to have it. I was thrilled to find a tintype-like photograph in this format, with the sitter easily fitting in this collection. It needed quite a bit of cleaning up too. I usually keep originals alone but I’m looking to find out how to renovate the frame and cover a few age stains.


A summer day in the countryside

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Enjoying a summer day on a log rocking chair. Private Collection.

This gentleman has an easy air of sophistication, dressed in all white with a neat bowtie and open book on his lap. He looks as if he’s escaped the city for a bit of downtime and fresh air. This real photo postcard portrait was taken in the 1920’s.

Here’s a closer look at him.

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“Guess Who?”

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c. 1930-40 photo portrait. 3.25″ x 4″. Private Collection.

Someone wrote “Guess who?” on the back.

“Is this..? Oh my God, it is!” I imagine the recipient said when they first gazed at the portrait, and then a small smile formed in response to the genuine one on display.

This young man posed in his zipped up leather aviator jacket with a plaid scarf around the neck and dotted tie. His smile is endearing, with the hand tinted cheeks. Some say he bears a striking resemblance to Matt Damon. I can see it, do you?


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