My younger brother, Mike, and I, Christmas 1966 (I think). The dog’s name was Irish, as befitting the Irish field setter that she was.
The picture was taken in my parents’ first little house on Cottonwood Drive in Jenison, Michigan by my mom using her old (then new) Brownie box camera (I know my mom took this picture, because all the pictures from this period taken by my dad had his finger over the lens, making them easy to identify – it’s a running joke in my family). The original print has long faded into oblivion, but my mom kept the negatives all these years. A while back the film was damaged in a fire, this on top of 40 years of fading and degradation of the film stock. A couple of years ago I scanned them into digital format using an HP transparent materials scanner and found that the silver nitrate and the fixatives used back then had shifted the negative’s color far to the red over the years. The negatives were scratched and damaged and dusty and some just weren’t recoverable. But I ran what I could through Corel’s Paintshop Photo Pro using the restoration tools package, this was one of those pictures. It’s a little dark, but that’s typical of the old format and the flash bulbs used to illuminate the shot (if you’re too young to remember rotary dial phones and flash bulbs, well you can look forward to telling your kids about MP3 players and the wild wooly days of unregulated internet service).
Merry Christmas, Folks.