Tag Archives: smiling

A flashy smile on a tintype

A particularly flashy smile on a tintype. Private Collection.

A particularly flashy smile on a tintype. Private Collection.

These two dapper gents in their 30s are posing in front of a cloudy and hilly backdrop all smile! The people with them must have said something really funny for them to look this entertained! This tintype seems late period, maybe around 1910. Their popularity dropped in the first decade of the 1900s, but they were still fairly common with travelling photographers until the 20s.

The glare is from a small bend in the middle reflecting the scanner light. Unfortunately many tintypes have such bends through decades of handling.


The Good Fellows

RPPC. Private Collection.

The dapper gangster look of the 20s-30s. RPPC. Private Collection.

These four gents are wearing the classic suits and hats made iconic by the bad guys of the era. The gentleman to the front right has the perfect looks and demeanor for the style, doesn’t he? He looks like the leader of the pack, and he stands out wearing a light colored suit against his friends’ darker ones. Interesting detail is no one’s holding a smoke in their hand, but they’re all smiling!

RPPC: I haven’t seen this type before. It has a stamp box with S in each corner.


Up Close

Snapshot. Private Collection.

1910s-20s snapshot. Private Collection.

This young man looks quite happy in his straw boater and bowtie. Isn’t his big smile infectious? This photograph is postcard size but a bit narrower. An early candid taken outdoors in the sunlight, perhaps a ‘selfie’? :) Of the period there aren’t too many informal pictures of people taken so close to the face.


Soldier and Sweetheart

Soldier and Sweetheart. Snapshot. Private Collection.

Soldier and Sweetheart. Snapshot. Private Collection.

Leaning into his beautiful girlfriend this soldier had a reason to smile. They match, don’t they? Her glossy brunette hair matches his, and below that tightly pleated and floor length skirt her shoes match his boots too. She’s also seated with crossed legs like him.

My guess is this was an American couple from the 1920’s.


The fire’s still burning bright in this old man

Old smiling man. CDV. Private Collection.

1870’s old smiling man from Algona, Iowa. Burlingame. CDV. Private Collection.

The oldest sitter in my collection!  He must have been in his 70’s or 80’s at the time of this picture, always a feat at a time when the average lifespan was much shorter. I find it fascinating to think this man was born in or around 1800. I cannot begin to imagine what his life was like, the changes he witnessed, what he had seen and experienced, good or bad, and after all that for him to smile like this. So unusual too for a carte de visite of the period.

He looks like someone who led a very fulfilling life. There is fire and a zest for life in his piercing eyes old age did not manage to dim. And to complement the effect he still had a headful of thick, snowy white hair.

There is a different kind of true beauty that transcends age and is deeper than the fleeting skin-deep one of youth; this content looking, dignified old man is proof. (I bet though, that he was quite the gentleman in his younger days too!)

I love his generous neck scarf too, the way he tied it in a nice bow.

CDV back

CDV back

Photographer: D.W. Burlingame’s. Fine Art Gallery, Algona. Iowa.


%d bloggers like this: