Wednesday, 10 October 2007

22 days till...ok I think it's pretty clear by now

October! The gothest of the months. The perfect time to curl up with a warm cup of tea, put on that Siouxsie and the Banshees record, and look at pictures of the dead in contrived but oddly touching poses. That's right, today's photo montage consists not of animals in funny outfits, but of Victorian memento mori photography!!!

Fact: Memento mori photographs and daguerreotypes were a common practice during the days of our scary Victorian ancestors, when child mortality rates were much higher.

Fact: They make a really great screensaver or desktop theme!

Fact: Most memento mori pictures portray the deceased as merely sleeping, and often were something of a last family portrait.

Fact: You can find many such photographs and more history on websites like this one , including a super, super creepy one of a girl with her eyes open! Don't look at it before bed, okay? Trust me on this one. Once seen, there is no amount of costumed lizards that can purge this from your mind.

Another good resource for information on things like mourning jewelry and photography is Art of Mourning which gets extra points for its beautiful typeface and nice weeping willows/ funereal decor. Another impressive info site belongs to this fine lady, Emmeline Grangerford.

Check it:

Ah yes, the classic Victorian memento mori tramp stamp. Much like its sister art, memorial photography, this practice began losing favor sometime in the early 1920s as tastes changed towards fun stuff like flappers and jazz and became less focused on scaring the shit out of young female bloggers just trying to kill time before they go out at night. God, it's gonna be a long walk to the tube.

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