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Tag: Photography

Iceland, 1934

News of unearthed photos by Dutch photographer Willem van de Poll taken on his visit to Iceland in 1934 have spread fast on Icelandic sites over the past month when lemurinn.is was able to post a large collection of them back in October. The set shows an interesting snapshot of life around the country, as well as Icelandic horses, Glima wrestlers, and natural landmarks that are still popular with photographers today.

Somewhat related is this tourism video from a decade earlier, showing a few similar scenes.


Spending too much time in photo archives, I would often come across prints that looked like duplicates, like this famous picture of Mark Twain or this one of Roosevelt in Yellowstone. I did not think much of them, assuming that was just an industry standard that photographers used back then for copies – I learned recently however that these were special prints called stereographs, and when viewed with proper glasses would produce a crude 3D effect (it is essentially the same concept behind the View-Master, a toy that many of us probably had when we were kids).

The Library of Congress maintains large collections of stereographs, including many from the early 20th century when it was a big industry for photographers. Some favorites:

stereograph_01 Read more

The Man Who Stole the Soul of a 300 SLR

Great story on some fascinating photography work:

Early that year, Bernhard got a phone call from the museum and was asked if he wants to photograph 30 cars for an exhibition catalogue. He said yes. The museum built him a studio in a storage facility, outside Vienna. The setup, 20 meters long and 15 meters wide, had a moving stage, like a turn table. The project took 5 months to finish, but only because part of the cars, spread all over the world, were brought in only shortly before the exhibition, to avoid huge costs for insurances.

On using light:

With the help of two assistants, he photographed one automobile per day (5-6 images only). The most difficult to shoot were the black cars on the black background. But white wouldn’t have been an option. Photographing high-shine convex or concave surfaces is amongst the biggest challenges in product photography. It’s not anymore about putting light on the object, but about letting the shiny object reflect the surfaces around it. In this particular case, the light had to be bounced back on the cars from a white reflecting surface used as a ceiling.

Great results:


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