Saturday, June 20, 2015

Sepia Saturday 284: 20th June 2015



Alan Burnett of Sepia Saturday says:


Our prompt this week couldn't be more self-explanatory if you were to type it out in capital letters. If you have any old pictures that relates to the theme image, just post your posts on or around Saturday 20th June 2015.


I cannot see a typewriter without thinking of my mother.  She adored her Olivetti which you see here on her desk.  Many of her letters were typed on this although she had beautiful writing as well.

I can't remember what happened to the Olivetti.  It certainly did a lot of work.  My mother was a prolific letter writer and she typed my father's thesis or theses over the years as well as her own University essays and assignments and I probably typed a few of mine on it as well.

I have had to doctor this photo I am afraid as it wasn't black and white originally but colour.  I have cropped the original and used the Holga effect in Picasa to make it more dramatic.

This is the photo before it was cropped.


And this is the original photo before the Holga effect.


I am so pleased to have found this photo this morning.  I couldn't really remember if anything like it existed.  I was hoping for maybe a photo of my mother's desk in the background of another shot.  But this is perfect.  I think my father must have taken it.  Hooray for him for capturing her as I remember her so well!  How old is the photo?  Hmmm...not sure - at least 20 years old so hopefully that fits the definition of sepia.

Thanks too to Aunty Denise for insisting that I ship my mother's desk up here and keep it after she died.  I do love this desk but probably not as much as my mother loved it.  She put a lot of work into it: stripping it back and re-staining it a lovely mucky ash coloured kind of stain.  It's got all sorts of interesting drawers and thingummy jigs that you can pull out in case you need an extra shelf or desk space.



Words - they can be troublesome things can't they?  I am a bit apprehensive about going to a foreign country in a couple of weeks...about not knowing the language...I'm trying to learn Indonesian in the car going to and from work and it is, as they say, a very easy language to learn.  It will be excruciating for me, I'm sure, as I haltingly try to ask for things.  As I try to understand and be understood.  In particular I don't want to offend or seem foolish.  But them's the breaks and it will be good for me to be outside my comfort zone.  We all get into a bit of rut at times don't we.  And after all - it's only words and words are all I have...to quote a famous song...

I'm not a great fun of the Bee Gees but this song sprang to mind with this week's theme...I hope it's not an ear worm for you...and speaking of the Bee Gees...did you know that we have a Bee Gees way at Redcliffe?  It's getting a bit of a makeover and will re-open on 11 September.  A great tourist attraction now apparently.  I really must go and check it out one day.


For more musing on words, letters and typewriters let your fingers do the walking over here.


25 comments:

Jo Featherston said...

A lovely memory of your mother at her desk. I have my mother's escritoire, as she liked to call it. "It's only words" is a great song.

ScotSue said...

Your post was so reminiscent of mine this week, as we were both inspired by our parents to write a moving tribute to them. Good luck with learning Indonesian - I imagine it must be quite tricky to come to grips with.

Family History Fun

diane b said...

Lovely shot of your mother at her desk. I like the Bee gees and we have been to the bee gee way. We'll have to go again when the make over is finished.Hope you enjoy your trip to Indonesia.

Kristin said...

I like the way you changed the photograph to black and white. good luck with the Indonesian!

Postcardy said...

Your black and white versions of your photo turned out well. The cropped version looks very mysterious and timeless.

Little Nell said...

Thanks to your father for taking that wonderful shot of his wife. My mother was the typist in out family too but not one photo exists of her actually doing any typing; you are so lucky.

La Nightingail said...

The photo of your mother at her desk is beautiful both ways, but the Holga effect does add a special quality to it. Funny - you'd think it would be the other way round. A lovely post!

Alex Daw said...

Dear Jo - escritoire - now that's a great word!

Alex Daw said...

I know Sue - when I read your post I was like - "Oh! snap!" Indonesian is a fun language and the first non-European one I have attempted so quite different.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Diane - I'm really looking forward to going and experiencing something different.

Alex Daw said...

Thank you Kristin !

Alex Daw said...

I was very happy with it Postcardy. I'm becoming a bit addicted to those effects in Picasa. I'll get over it eventually I'm sure.

Alex Daw said...

I am lucky aren't I Nell? And so very pleased to have found it. It's so hard to tell at the time what will be important later in terms of taking photos. Candid ones are especially difficult to take.

Alex Daw said...

I hear you La Nightingail. You would think colour would be more important and on it's own, it is a nice photo but I agree - the Holga effect adds punch.

Deb Gould said...

Nice study of the typewriter and the newspaper! And I like the black and white version of your mother better than the color one. Indonesian? Wow, am I impressed! Have fun!

violet s said...

YTour cropped version look very artsy. And it is so much better in black and white.
Love those 'thingammy jigs', they are so handy!

Joan said...

Alex, your beautiful post and photo of your mom and her writing desk, chucked my memories to the old partner's desk that my business partner and I bought when we started our fledgling business. I wish I had a photo that highlighted those wondeful days as much as your as lovely as your holga effect photo shot highlights your mom. Wonderfully done.

boundforoz said...

You were lucky to find the photo of the desk. Isn't it amazing how many objects which have played an important part in our lives never crop up in our photos. What about the mixmasters and the coffee machines, the dinner sets and the electric kettles, alarm clocks and radiators, etc etc. Not a sign of them anywhere. Just people !

Wendy said...

Look at you getting all artsy with Picasa. I do like the effect though and you're right -- the B&W photo looks dramatic whereas the color is "just a photo." I had a desk with the pull-out table space. I got rid of it when I redid my "genealogy room," and I sure miss that pull-out - but I don't miss the desk itself.

Alex Daw said...

Thanks Deb....I'll let you know how I go.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Violet - Alex bows and blushes :)

Alex Daw said...

Thanks Joan - it was a fun exercise.

Alex Daw said...

It is very difficult to see things with "historical" eyes in the present indeed.

Alex Daw said...

Isn't it funny Wendy - I like that my desk has the pull-out thingy but I have to be honest and say that I never use it....but I sure use every other nook and cranny.

Brett Payne said...

Your first photo here is wonderful, and well worth the effort of resorting to Picasa, but the original was pretty good too. Some photographs preserve atmo0sphere in our memories so well, and I'm glad that this one does it for you.