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Posts Tagged ‘Kodachrome’

I have just returned from Kerry where I had an amazing time at the Listowel Writers’ Week. The atmosphere was really friendly and I thoroughly enjoyed the literary walking tour of the town which included some of the places mentioned in John B. Keane‘s plays and stories. The talks given by David Sedaris and the biographer Michael Holroyd were well worth the journey. I can’t wait to go back for next year’s festival. 

This trip to Kerry reminded me of some beautiful kodachrome slides featuring the county which were taken by an English tourist in 1967. I have shared some of them previously on this blog but now that I have witnessed the beauty of Banna Strand for myself (this is where the sea holly was photographed) I thought I’d post a few more. 

The image of the men carrying the currach boat at Scraggane Pier reminds me of Bill Doyle‘s colour photographs of Inis Oírr taken in 1965 and I find the ruined cottage particularly poignant and a reminder of an Ireland that has vanished. 

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I have posted about this collection on a previous occasion and it contains some great images of a tourist’s visit to Ireland in 1967. Even though we complain about Irish summers I honestly think that the slightly menacing sky in the first slide is far more interesting than a clear blue one. I also think that the Kodachrome process really enhances the Irish landscape bringing out the various green and blue hues. The small figures on Banna Strand, County Kerry and the children playing on the dunnes in the second image taken at Rossbeigh Beach pull you into the images giving them a sense of scale and animation. You can also see some interesting earlier Kodachrome photographs at House of Mirth


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These colour slides were taken by an unknown English tourist in the summer of 1967. I think this photographer had a great eye and the sixty or so slides which I bought online include some real gems. The first photograph shows Oliver Plunkett Street, Cork and I particularly like the shop signs and the reflections in the car mirror. The others show a very blue Dingle Harbour and sea urchin shells collected at Derrynane, County Kerry. The latter is a really strong image  and the repeat pattern created by the shells is particularly appealing. 

The vivd Kodachrome colour works equally well on both the streetscape and natural landscape. This process was launched in 1939 and only ceased production last year. Farewell Kodachrome is a site dedicated to the process and it contains some great images and essays. A book and exhibition by Guy Stricherz called Americans in Kodachrome, 1945-1965 contains ninety images taken, like these three, by anonymous amateur photographers.

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