Saturday, January 30, 2010

Sepia Saturday: Dowdy or Not

I've posted it here, but quite a while back. This is my mother, Helen Polley at the time, around 1943 when she was 18. My sister and I never saw this picture until a couple of years after she died and her sister sent it to us. She'd mentioned that as a teen she had done a few modeling shots but said that all shots from the shoot were lost. "No great loss," she would say. "They were pretty silly since I looked so dowdy in those shots."

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11 Comments:

At 7:55 AM, Blogger willow said...

Your mother was breathtakingly beautiful. She had such a fresh, healthy, all American look about her. And look at those hands! She could have been a hand model, as well! What a treasure to discover the photo after she was gone.

 
At 10:06 AM, Blogger Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Willow - Thanks. She was always one that said you shouldn't make a fuss about your looks which may have been what was her true beauty.

 
At 12:26 PM, Blogger rich bachelor said...

I'm not sure if I'm wrong about this or not, but it seems like once upon a time it was important to have a posed, professional photo portrait done, whether you were famous or not. It just seems like everybody had to, as a basic social necessity.

Again, great photo of your mom.

 
At 12:30 PM, Blogger Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Rich - I think that's a good point. There has been too much of a move towards having "candid" photos and a delusion that they are more real or capture the true person. I think that trusting yourself to a photographer who helps to pose you may be a truer image. Maybe I need to re-read Susan Sontag on this issue.

 
At 12:56 PM, Blogger mouse (aka kimy) said...

what a gorgeous portrait - and willow is so correct about her hands! I have always been envious of long, lovely hands - unfortunately I seemed to have inherited the chunky, highly muscled hands of my maternal grandmother and now that I'm aging they are also getting somewhat gnarly like hers got in her advanced years....

oh you should let kat (poetkat) know you are playing sepia saturday so you blog is linked for all us time travellers!!

oh I was have problems posting pics this morning, blogger was wonky, I added snaps of a document you might enjoy after you checked the mouse...

 
At 1:04 PM, Blogger Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Mouse - I am sure she would have been flattered. Thanks for pointing me to Kat since I didn't know Alan was on holiday.

 
At 2:08 PM, Blogger Erin Wallace said...

Not a dowdy photo at all - she is beautiful! Isn't it funny how we see ourselves compared to the way others view us?

 
At 4:37 PM, Blogger Poetikat said...

Dowdy? I think not!

Sorry, Ladron, I did not get your comment until just a few moments ago. I've been out most of the day.

I will add you straight away.

Thanks, Kat

P.S. I've posted to notify participants that new posts are up.

 
At 5:40 PM, Blogger Leah said...

What a gorgeous portrait! You can see her character shining in her eyes.

and pretty swell manicure there, too...

 
At 6:54 PM, Blogger Barry said...

While I would hate to disagree with a man's mother, she was certainly wrong about this photo. But then how many of us are good judges of our own appearance?

She is stunningly beautiful.

What a treasure to find.

 
At 7:54 PM, Blogger L. D. Burgus said...

She was underestimating her looks. It looks like a classic movie star. My mom's grad picture looks like a flapper. It is such a great picture and it is too bad you didn't get it sooner so your really could have gotten some info or thoughts from her. Great blog.

 

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