American Collections blog

38 posts categorized "Photography"

26 August 2013

Celebrating: World Dog Day

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Pelorus Jack Mascot of HMS New Zealand (HS85-10-29327)

Above: Pelorus Jack of HMS New Zealand. Looks like he loved his job. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

Public Domain Mark
These works are free of known copyright restrictions.

At Team Americas we like to give opportunities to all and our canine friends might have felt they had a 'ruff' deal on World Cat Day. But do not fear, we bring you Canada's finest historical pooches for World Dog Day! Unfortunately, it seems early twentieth century Canada was less fond of dogs and so they make fewer appearances in the collection than our feline friends. That said there's not a single cat with a Union Flag in the rest of the photographs...

Squidge Regimental pet of the 24th Battalion (HS85-10-29943)

Above: 'Squidge', proud to sit wherever you tell him. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

An English Setter of the breed coming from the kennel of PL Llewellyn and sometimes termed the Llewellyn Setter photograph of a drawing (HS85-10-14981)

Above: 'Squirrel!' Image from Wikimedia Commons.

So, with that, enjoy World Dog Day everyone - Team Americas will, it's a bank holiday over here!


08 August 2013

The Cats of Canada

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The Globe kittens (HS85-10-13446-11)

Above: some of our colleagues may bring you illuminated cats but we bring you cats and books!

Public Domain Mark
These works are free of known copyright restrictions.

Those of you on Twitter will have noticed it is World Cat Day and here at Team Americas we love a bandwagon. So, here's a selection of wonderful felines from the Picturing Canada collection. Enjoy!

A garden party (taken from life) (HS85-10-8754)

Above: a (rather scary) garden party

Fritz the cat (HS85-10-11178)

Above: Fritz, looking magnificent

Topsey's curiosity (HS85-10-20757)

Above: Topsey is curious...

The Globe kittens (HS85-10-13446-3)

Above: another set of bookish kittens to round us off

All images are from the Picturing Canada collection on Wikimedia Commons. You can read more about the collection over at Public Domain Review.


25 July 2013

Prince George - British Columbia

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J.Simonson, Prince George, B.C. (HS85-10-35684)
Prince George, BC., May 1, 1919  Available from Wikimedia Commons

Public Domain Mark 

Continuing our theme of a Canadian photo for every occasion, we couldn't resist providing this image of Prince George, British Columbia, taken in May 1919. The city may not come up first in Google searches any longer, but the mayor doesn't seem too bothered, judging by this piece in the Huffington Post! The photo is part of our Picturing Canada project.



23 July 2013

The Royal Baby and Photos for Every Occasion

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Courtship and wedding Photo 11 The stork's visit stereoscopic view (HS85-10-17208)

Above: 'The Stork's Visit'. Available from Wikimedia Commons.

Public Domain Mark
These works are free of known copyright restrictions.

Here in Team Americas we've been rather swept up by our own new arrival, Beth's son Camilo, but we couldn't help but notice the House of Windsor's most recent addition too. Also, given Canada's enthusiasm for the Prince of Cambridge we thought it appropriate to roll out a few Canadian photographs that match the mood.

HMS Virago firing in honour of the King (HS85-10-11979)

Above: HMS Virago firing in honour of the King. From Wikimedia Commons.

Needless to say there really is a photograph for every occasion in the collection generated from Picturing Canada, to the extent that some of them even come in 3D (with the right glasses or .gif). On a more serious note, the collection also reflects Canada's historical enthusiasm for the Royal Family, not least in the photographic tributes to Victoria and celebrations of the coronation of Edward VII contained in the collection.

Historical notes aside, enjoy the photographs and congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge from Team Americas (and Australasia).


01 July 2013

Happy Canada Day!

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Above: the opening of the Victoria parliament buildings, 1898. From Wikimedia Commons, copyright number 9752 

Public Domain Mark
These works are free of known copyright restrictions.

Many happy returns, Canada, and congratulations on your 146th year. Team Americas has made a habit of marking the occasion but this year is a little different - this year we have arranged a little present.

You see today is the official 'go live' day of the Picturing Canada project. Since I last posted on the blog about it we have completed the digitisation, uploaded over 2,000 new files to Wikimedia Commons and started hosting the images on the Library's Digitised Manuscripts viewer as well. As we mentioned before, the files uploaded onto Commons have all been released under a public domain license and it's great to see that some have already been used in various new contexts.

Above: Dan Patch in one of the collection's many photographs of animals and sports (not always combined...). From Wikimedia Commons, copyright number 16532

For those of you who missed the previous posts, the Picturing Canada project has sought to digitise the Library's collection of colonial copyright photographs. These were accumulated between the years 1895 and 1924 with over 4,000 photographs being part of the final collection. The photographs come from across Canada and the collection covers a dynamic time in Canada's history through the lens of amateurs, as well as some of Canada's more well-known photographers.

Above: composite portrait marking the first cabinet of the Province of Alberta. From Wikimedia Commons, copyright number 16448. 

To illustrate the point, the collection holds photographs of Wilfrid Laurier, the opening of the parliament buildings in Victoria, commemorative photographs marking Alberta and Saskatchewan joining the Confederation, as well as many other photographs of Canadian politics in action.  Canada Day related politics are not the only theme though, expanding lines of communication, wars, migration, growing cities, major sporting events, notable foreign visitors and many other subjects are covered (often from multiple angles) in the collection.

So, with celebrations to attend to (do catch the annual Trafalgar Square party if you have time) I'll sign off with a reminder that you can find and use the images from Wikimedia Commons or browse and view them in fantastic detail on the Library's Digitised Manuscripts viewer (just type 'hs85/10' in the manuscripts search bar). One quick disclaimer on the latter, we're still in the process of getting the photographs onto this so do keep checking back and you'll see more everytime.

Above: one more cat picture! From Wikimedia Commons, copyright number 20757

With all that said, enjoy the day and the photos - and if you do anything exciting with them be sure to let us know!


20 June 2013

Naomi Wood

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Image © Ander McIntyre

A portrait of Naomi Wood at the Moghul exhibition at the British Library in December 2012.

Naomi is one of the Writers in Residence at the Eccles Centre for American Studies, the author of The Godless Boys (Picador) and Mrs Hemingway (forthcoming from Picador).

[Ander McIntyre is a photographer and a Fellow at the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library.  He is an occasional contributor to this blog.]

21 May 2013

Justin Webb, James Montgomery Flagg and Uncle Sam

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Image: Justin Webb and Uncle Sam © Ander McIntyre

A portrait of Justin Webb, presenter of the Today programme on BBC Radio 4, just before delivering the third annual Benjamin Franklin House Robert H. Smith lecture in American Democracy ('Wise Up America! A Friendly Word from a Foreigner'), co-sponsored by the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library on 10 May 2013.

James Montgomery Flagg's famous First World War recruiting poster image of Uncle Sam is from the current Propaganda: Power and Persuasion exhibition at the Library, which runs until 17 September.

[Ander McIntyre is a photographer and a Fellow at the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library.  He is an occasional contributor to this blog.]

16 May 2013

Noam Chomsky and Propaganda

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Noam Chomsky at the British Library, 2013 © Ander McIntyre

Ander McIntyre is a photographer and a Fellow at the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library.  He is an occasional contributor to this blog:

A portrait of Noam Chomsky just before he delivered a lecture at the British Library on 19 March this year, as part of the series of events under the banner of the Library's new exhibition Propaganda: Power and Persuasion.

In 1988, Professor Chomsky wrote, in Language and Problems of Knowledge: The Managua Lectures (MIT Press),

Work of true aesthetic value follows canons and principles that are only in part subject to human choice; in part, they reflect our fundamental nature. The result is that we can experience deep emotion - pleasure, pain, excitement, and so on - from certain creative work, though how and why remains largely unknown. But the very capacities of mind that open these possibilities to us exclude other possibilities forever. The limits of artistic creativity should, again, be a matter of joy, not sorrow, because they follow from the fact that there is a rich domain of aesthetic experience to which we have access.

A film of Chomsky's conversation at the Library with Jonathan Freedland is on our YouTube channel.