Monday, May 14, 2012

From the "Obsolete but Awesome" Department

Note from Mel:  This week I'll be running some of my favorite posts from the past two years.  Consider it a "retrospective".  Maybe you'll discover some posts you never got to see the first time around!  :D

Here's something we'll probably never see again - transparencies!

Remember back to your school days - if you're over 35, you'll recall that teachers/professors would use transparencies on an overhead projector to aid in their teaching/lectures.  When I was in college, there were professors who would begin each lecture with a cartoon or joke, printed right on the transparency.  I always thought that was neat.

I never got high enough up the corporate ladder to have to make a presentation at work, but if I ever had to I'm sure I would've used an overhead projector as an aid, at least before about 1995 (that's when PowerPoint really came into play).  Imagine how much work went into these transparencies!  If they weren't handwritten then they had to be typed out first, then copied.  Of course, you had to make sure that they were in the proper order or you'd spend half your presentation looking for the right one.  PowerPoint changed all that.

Ah, but there's nothing ephemeral about PowerPoint!  In fact, there's quite a bit of PowerPoint backlash out there due to poorly executed presentations.    Couple that with no ephemeral quality and I'll take transparencies any day!  :D

I got these transparencies at Silver Crow Creations - they're pretty old.  Judging by the thickness of the plastic used, I'm going to say 50s-60s.  They also have quite an odd smell, like formaldehyde or something (the smell goes away if they're aired out).  Aren't they marvelous?!  The tiny ones are great for their size and colorfulness but this big one - LOVE.  I don't know yet how I'm going to use it but I am saving it for what I hope to be a marvelous creation (don't all artists hope and pray that each of their creations turns out to be marvelous?).  :D

I have used the little ones in my art - they're SO versatile!


  1. Thanks for including our transparencies, Mel, but the other stuff is to die for. I was just thinking yesterday about how many things are obsolete - including photo albums. With virtual photo albums, we really end up with ... nothing ... I know that sounds awful, but it's true. I had so much fun looking through papers and albums looking for a picture for Mother's day (I know this isn't truly related, sorry), but there is hardly anything to TOUCH anymore. Touch is so important. That's what you offer us every day. Thank you so much.

    1. You're very welcome, Annie! I have SO many of those little transparencies - I can't stop buying them just because I love the way they look! :D
      I completely agree with you about photos - because we're able to take literally THOUSANDS of photos now, most have lost their uniqueness. There is something tangible and life-affirming about viewing yellowed photos in an old album - now, it's just viewing a screen. Maybe the younger generations don't feel this way because they've never known anything different, but to me, albums are the way to go. :)
      Oh, and thank you so much for your lovely compliments, Annie! :D