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Northport, Maine. By Paul Goldfinger. © Northport, Maine. By Paul Goldfinger.   Click to make our family bigger.

 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

The year was 1996, and I was attending a summer course at the Maine Photo Workshops.  It was called “Finding Your Visual Voice”  It was taught by a professor from the Savannah School of the Arts.   One day we went on a field trip to a pretty town on the Penobscot Bay called Northport.  It was such a peaceful place, and the quaint summer cottages were placed around a large center grassy area.

I was told that the town had a religious background, and every August people came for a camp meeting.  At the time I was only mildly impressed by that history, but later I learned that the town was settled in the 18th century, and somewhere along the way the Methodist Camp Meeting idea was adopted, and most visitors since the first camp meeting in 1849, still go there in August for religious reasons, although the web site says that the town was now becoming a “watering hole.”

Anyhow, it seemed like an All-American picture-perfect place.  While I was looking around for some photographic subjects a family, straight out of Norman Rockwell, came down the path towards me.  Great…this will be a terrific portrait of Americana.  My camera was set on a tripod ready to go, so I asked them if I could take their picture.

They cheerfully agreed, and as I looked at them through the viewfinder, I saw a loving, happy family, and I thought, “I’d like to be a member of that family, even for just a moment.” So I told them what I had in mind, and they loved the idea and welcomed me into the family for this shot.   There was only one exposure and then they went on their way.

Whenever I look at this image I think, “I’m so lucky to be adopted by this perfect family, even for only 1/250th of a second.”

 

ETTA JONES and HOUSTON PERSON:  “…through it all we all will be together, if the fates allow….”   The album: Together at Christmas, 2000.

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xxxxxxx

Kennett  Square, Pennsylvania.  2013.  By Paul Goldfinger   ©

 

ANITA O’DAY  and CAL TJADER. (vibraphone)

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Paul Goldfinger ©.  Phones.  New York City.  Undated. TriX collection.

 

THE ELGINS:

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Fort Hancock. October 9, 2015. Paul Goldfinger photograph. © Blogfinger.net. Fort Hancock.   October 9, 2015. Paul Goldfinger photograph.  Blogfinger.net.  Click to enlarge

 

 

JOHN COURTNEY  from the movie Chef.   “Lucky Man.”

 

 

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Union Square Park. NYC. By Paul Goldfinger ©.

Union Square Park. NYC. By Paul Goldfinger ©.  Left click makes it  a little bigger.

 

CHARLIE PARKER  (with strings)  from the Complete Master Takes album.   “April in Paris”

 

This song was written by Vernon Duke and Yip Harburg  (wouldn’t it be great to have a name like “Yip?”)  for a Broadway show in 1932 called “Walk a Little Faster.” The Count Basie and his Orchestra version (1955) is the most famous (“one more time; one more once.”)    The Basie version also was featured in the Mel Brooks movie “Blazing Saddles” where it is transplanted to the old west.   —Paul Goldfinger, music editor @Blogfinger

 

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A girl in her summer clothes. Central Park, Upper East Side. Paul Goldfinger photo © August 2014.  Click to enlalrge and  see her tug on her dress. Was she primping for the photographer? Is she with the others, and what does the little smile mean?  Ask Paul McCartney—he wrote the song and included the piccolo.

 

“Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes
There beneath the blue suburban skies
Penny Lane.”

 

THE BEATLES:

 

 

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Founders' Park, Ocean Grove, NJ. Paul Goldfinger photograph. ©

Founders’ Park, Ocean Grove, NJ. Paul Goldfinger photograph. © 2017

 

 

PEGGY LEE:    “September in the Rain”   from the album  Ladies of the Great American Songbook.

 

 

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Marilyn Monroe, no longer in the dark. Marilyn Monroe, no longer in the dark.  Photographer George Barris made Marilyn smile.  I always imagined that she was smiling at me.

 

 

 

 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger  (re-posted from November, 2014)

 

Marilyn Monroe was born Norma Jean Mortenson in Los Angeles on June 1,  1926.  She tragically died at the age of 36. She was the pin-up girl for most of the guys from my generation.  Marilyn was not only a movie star, but she also was a singer.  Remember “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend” from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes?

Many years ago I found this photo  (above)  of MM in a shop on Thompson Street in  Greenwich Village where they sold images of Hollywood stars.  I loved her smile, her hair, and her towel. The picture was provocative even though it is rated P.G. (my initials)

Marilyn has been on the wall of my dark room for many years, so she was always smiling at me, keeping me company, while I was engaged in that solitary activity. Now, as I take down that old technology, the photo of Marilyn will remain, as the dark room takes on new digital form.

There were many photographers who were known for their images of her—tens of thousands of photos of Marilyn exist.

Those who were privileged to photograph her included many great names such as  Avedon, Bachrach, Eisenstadt and Newman.

We recently wrote a post about the photographers on the movie set of The Misfits, where MM was photographed with Clark Gable, Montgomery Clift, Arthur Miller, and Eli Wallach.   BF about The Misfits

She was a passionate and vulnerable  person who, like a beautiful butterfly,  flitted from one to another without landing happily.  Here is a quote from Marilyn herself, “I knew I belonged to the public and to the world, not because I was talented or even beautiful but because I had never belonged to anything or anyone else.
” –From the Unfinished Biography of Marilyn Monroe

Her singing was wispy and sexy. Recently Barry Manilow decided to make an album of “Dream Duets” using technology to bring him together in song with his departed musical heroes.  One of the songs was with Marilyn.

 

MARILYN MONROE  Gentlemen Prefer Blonds

 

 

 

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Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. 2013. By Paul Goldfinger ©

Wyeth’s studio.  Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. 2013. By Paul Goldfinger ©

 

Gross anatomy lab at The George Washington U. School of Medicine.  Paul Goldfinger.  Freshman year. The cigarette is a prop. ©  Her name was Ethel.  You can tell by the pelvis.

 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger  This post by popular request from the cast of True Blood.

 

Andrew Wyeth, famous painter, was a movie buff and he had souvenirs around his studio, given to him by some of his actor friends. There was a sword from the swashbuckling Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.   The skeleton was real, but I don’t know if he had it there for fun or for body sketches.

We had a skeleton in the gross anatomy lab in medical school. I am wearing my smelly formaldehyde laden lab coat with my arm around Ethel.  She was very thin.

My roommate Jim  and I were given a bone box and a skull box to take home and study.  One month later, we put a hat on the skull,  lit it up, and put it in our ground floor window for Halloween on 16th Street in D.C.

Down the street,  a few blocks away, was the White House  where our neighbor  JFK and his family lived.

We should have walked over to see if Marilyn was sneaking up the back steps.

 

 

Marilyn Monroe. She had more visits to the White House than Bobby Kennedy.

 

LOUIS  PRIMA with a song for the skeleton  “I Ain’t Got No Body.”   And also “Just a Gigolo.” which is about my ambition after my bar mitzvah.

 

 

 

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Stockbridge, Massachusetts. 2010. By Paul Goldfinger ©

Stockbridge, Massachusetts. 2010. Silver gelatin print. By Paul Goldfinger ©  Click to enlarge.

 

CHARLES GOUNOD.   “Faust” ballet music. Berlin Philharmoniker

 

 

 

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