Remembering the Future: Metropolis

Still from Fritz Lang's 1927 science fiction film about a dystopian future.

On January 10th, 1927 the world gazed upon a startling dystopian version of the future. Fritz Lang‘s landmark sci-fi film Metropolis was released in Germany. Fans of retro-futurism can celebrate the event and watch Lang’s cinematic masterpiece via the Internet Archive. Cost of admission: FREE!

A Blast From the Past: The Rocket Book

Drop by the Library of Congress and explore its Center for the Book site. Why? The site hosts quite a bit of exciting and free books that are sure to please readers of all ages. Need proof? If so, flip through The Rocket Book (1912) by Peter Sheaf Hersey Newell. Delightful verse and humorous images propel eager readers through a madcap story that as fresh now as it was when it first appeared 102 years ago.

Image from The Rocket Book by American artist and author, Peter Newell (1862-1924). A naughty boy playing in a basement finds and ignites a rocket that blasts upward in an apartment building. In this image, a family meal is explosively upset as the rocket races ever upward.

The Steiners on the floor above
Of breakfast were partaking;
Crash! came the rocket, unannounced,
And set them all a-quaking!
It smote a catsup bottle, fair,
And bang! the thing exploded!
And now these people all declare
That catsup flask was loaded.

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:-)

 

Public Domain Day

Did you know that January 1st of every year is Public Domain Day? The Duke Law School‘s well-respected Center for the Study of the Public Domain is replete with information legal matters pertinent to intellectual property and the Public Domain.

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Old Book Illustrations, New Ideas

Old Book Illustration Blog

The images at Old Book Illustrations Scrapbook Blog are a treat to explore. Poring over this collection of vintage illustrations (mostly wood engravings/woodcuts, etchings or metal engravings) taken from books published between the 1700s through the early 1900s, is an exciting endeavor. One of my favorite pastimes is grabbing an illustration, dropping it into an image-editing program and overlaying colors.

Dapper Digital Images

A tip of the hat to a captivating catalog of eye-catching characters! Ever on the lookout for old pix to play with, I took a few minutes to drop by the New York Public Library’s Digital Gallery. I wasn’t disappointed. This treasure trove of ephemera provides visitors free and open access to over 800,000 digitized images. I grabbed the original image of the dapper fellow below, dropped it into an image-editing program, and tinkered with various overlay settings.

Image of a dapper looking fellow in a derby pointing rightward. I added a green tint to the original image.