A Quarter Past 1886 O’Clock

A while back, I got my mitts on an old 1880’s-era stereocard – the kind you put in a special holder and, when you look through it, you can see what looks like real life stereoscopic images.

stereocard 1

In you don’t have a stereoviewer, you could simply relax your eyes until the two stereo pairs blend into one image.  That’s all well and good … but I wanted to create something more stirring and stunning than this.

So I took the right image – the image that had more contrast and definition – and cropped it down into a single visual picture.  And as much as I thought the blue and pink tints were kinda funky, I flipped the card into a black-and-white image.

And I got this.

Stereocard 3a

Now this in itself is waycool … it looks like an olde-tyme photo.  Okay, yeah, it is an old-time photo.  And thanks to the good people at the Facebook group Albany … the Way It Was, there were enough clues in the picture to determine that the image was captured in the late 1880’s, let’s say circa 1886 for argument.

In the photo, you can clearly make out some buildings that still stand today – the two spires at the left side at the end of the street are from the First Church In Albany (Reformed), while the super-tall tower in the center is from St. Joseph’s Church in Albany.  From that vantage point today, St. Joseph’s Church is blocked out by the Leo O’Brien Federal Building, and …

Hmm…

You know what’s cool about having a new blog?

You come up with new ideas.

And this idea involves going BACK to that very location …

With my current camera gear …

Now this was my first attempt – there were cars along the intersection, so I only had a little bit of a location to shoot from.  Maybe when I go back there on Sunday, when all the cars and drivers are at church or something, I’ll get a better shot.

But for now …

Quarter Past 1886 O'Clock 1
A Quarter After 1886 O’Clock.  Vintage stereocard photo circa 1886; Nikon Df Camera, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 lens.  Photo by Chuck Miller.

Here’s my first attempt at this vintage-versus-original merge, which I’m currently calling A Quarter after 1886 O’Clock.  If I can get back there and get the alignment just perfect … I’m close right now, I know that.

But yeah … this is part of what a new blog will do for you.  It will invigorate you, it will stimulate your creative juices.  And if I can just get this picture properly aligned with the next try…

All will be well.