I know people are raving over this morph of the beautiful actresses, but it gave me the creeps. Demon Eve, the Cozening Shapeshifter! There is an uncanny similarity to the faces, but that’s partly an illusion of the morphing effect and the mask imposed by makeup and stylistic lighting – although you’ll note how Ingrid Bergman really blows out the template; when she appears it’s like watching a FF film of a mushroom growing. Steyn made a good point about the changing styles of the girl-next-door image, which does change; I’d add that many of the actresses of the 20s don’t fit the template at all. The humble love objects of many silent comedies look downright bowseresque today. (The racy bobbed-hair harlots were another matter.)

Hate to turn this into a photoblog today, but I had the Minnesota Youth Symphonies concert Sunday night, and that eats into evening work. Saturday afternoon I went downtown to shoot a  “Baby Loves Disco” event – it’s billed as a dance party for parents and kids. Takes place in a bar with actual alcohol, although I didn’t see many people drinking. Or dancing, for that matter. A few cute little kids thrashed around, but mostly it was mom bobbing toddlers and up and down to ABBA. Almost impossible to shoot; it was dim and loud, the music ensured no scenes could be matched unless I rolled tape for a backing track and eliminated all the audio from the individual clips, andI couldn’t really see anything and had to use nightvision to get some details. Other than that, a capital opportunity.

On the way back to the car – I parked at the Strib and walked, just for the exercise – I took some pictures of buildings I’ve neglected to shoot. The old Farmers and Mechanics bank has been turned into a hotel. They’re considerably less skittish about people shooting pictures in a hotel than a bank, for obvious reasons. I’d forgotten about this staircase: it’s not a elegant as the Rand Tower lobby steps, but it has its charms:


The ceiling has been spiffed up. I like this – it’s preferable to the designs of the 60s and 70s, which assumed everyone would want to live under white hanging plastic grids punctuated by glowing rectangles that hid the fluorescent bulbs – but it’s not quite right. Let's edit the plot a little, fellows:

The old bank heritage survives in some of the door details; they have a stern 40s quality that says BANK IN THE TIME OF POSTWAR CONFIDENCE.

Finally: I was playing around with some old Times Square photos, and found one I hadn't scanned - a shot from 1941. A closeup:

I had fun with filters on the big image; the 200K result is here.

New matchbook. Also, if you didn't catch it last Friday, my weekly instructional DVD review should be up at smartflix. Enjoy! See you at buzz.mn.