Wednesday, June 29, 2016

70s Still Life

Mom or Dad shot this photo of flowers set against glorious early 1970s wallpaper and drapes in our Flin Flon home. We had that end table for many years; I think we finally disposed of it sometime in the late 1990s.

Those of my friends playing Spirit of '77 should try to imagine our characters living with this sort of decor. It's actually kind of understated for the era...

Monday, June 27, 2016

Two Hotels

Here are two more partially-restored slides from the collection of my aunt and uncle. I quite like the graphic design of the signs, particularly the Safari. I wonder if either hotel exists anymore. 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Saving Some Slides

Most of the family slides I've been scanning over the last couple of years are in pretty good shape considering their age, but a few of the oldest slides have started to fade or lose their colour. This slide depicts a sheep herd in Monument Valley sometime in the 1960s. Unlike most of our slides, it wasn't taken by a family member; it was purchased as a keepsake. I think it's a pretty cool image, so I was disappointed to see that most of its colour had faded to bright red. Thankfully I was able to use a number of Photoshop tools to restore some of its original colour, though without knowing how the original looked it's hard to measure the degree of my success. It still looks a bit washed out, but it's better than the pinkish-red hue that once filled the entire frame.
This shot from the same set of slides shows how badly the images have degraded over the years.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

All Desire to Sail on the Open Ocean Is Lost

At least, that's how I feel after watching All Is Lost, Robert Redford's one-man show about disaster on the high seas. That being said, watching Redford stubbornly fight everything the Indian Ocean can throw at him makes for very suspenseful entertainment.

It also reminds me of those survival scenarios we used to game in junior high school. This film reinforces the importance of having a supply of potable water, tools for navigation, fishing line, a hat, signalling devices and, oh yes, POTABLE WATER. Poor Robert Redford - by the end of this movie he looks like a clay sculpture that's been completely dried out, covered in cracks.

Despite the film's many merits - it's tense, well-acted, seamlessly edited and tautly scripted (though there's barely any speaking) - there's a moment that really strains credulity and very nearly took me out of the movie. You'll know it when you see it.

In the end, though, All Is Lost is a powerful thriller and a testament to the power of human endurance and ingenuity. Just remember to bring a few extra deciliters of fresh water.