January, 2006

January 26, 2006

arctic_monkeys.jpgThe cover of the Arctic Monkeys’ debut album “Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not,” currently garnering accolades and smashing sales records, seems to be an attempt at recreating a photobooth photo, if the rear curtain is any indication.

It doesn’t much look like a real photobooth photo, but that hasn’t stopped a lot of artists, designers, and ad agencies in the past. It’s yet another reason why we’ll be starting a ‘Music’ section of the site soon, with album covers and song lyrics with photobooth references. If you’ve got anything to suggest (besides Death Cab and Liz Phair and the other usual suspects), please send it our way.

January 25, 2006

humberto_niagara.jpgPhotobooth repairman Humberto Verdeza is the subject of photobooth art exhibition on now at Niagara Bar, at the corner of Avenue A and East 7th in New York City.

Curated by Ethan Minsker and Ted Riederer, the show opened on December 5th of last year and is going on as we speak. We urge readers in the NYC area to head on over and tell us what you see. The artist statement reads, in part,

Over the years, I noticed Humberto coming in the bar and fixing the photo booth in the back room. When he finished his work, I would sign his slip of paper. One day I asked if he ever found any interesting photos. He said no, but showed me the test shots he did of himself. I asked if I could have them. “I’ll make some kind of art out of them,” I said as he walked out of the bar.

The curators let each artist involved in the show pick one photo of Humberto out of a stack of more than 40 strips, and do what they would with it. Twenty-five artists are listed on the site, and we look forward to hearing what their work is like. Thanks to Sean for the tip and the link.

Also, on an unrelated note, this is officially the 100th post in the blog. Thanks to everyone who has contributed, commented, and perused the news over the last year. We’re glad to know you’re there, and we appreciate your interest and support.

Brian | 2:49 pm | Art
January 24, 2006

godie_cmp.jpgUCR California Museum of Photography recently opened a new exhibition titled “Create and Be Recognized: Photography on the Edge,” which features the work of photobooth artist Lee Godie.

The program,

curated by independent curators Deborah Klochko, former director of The Friends of Photography at the Ansel Adams Center, and John Turner, a historian and scholar of outsider art, will be the first comprehensive survey of photo-based projects created by untrained visionaries.

The program runs through April 15, 2006. If you attend the show, please let us know what you see, and what you think.

Brian | 7:00 pm | Art
January 19, 2006

lime_green.jpgNew this week on eBay is a great-looking refurbished Photo-Me booth.

The booth achieves its distinctive look with the help of “1970 Dodge Challenger Lime” automotive paint and diamond plate on the front. The booth, which looks like it might have been something like a Model 20 or 21 in a previous life (edit: a Model 21GB, actually — thanks, Mike), is described as having a “new rebuilt transmission, a new amount adjustable bill acceptor…and new rubber kickpad on the bottom edging.”

The sellers have set an opening bid at $4000, and we’ll be interested to see if anyone bites at that price. It certainly is the best-looking booth we’ve seen on eBay in the last year or so, and we wouldn’t be surprised if some enterprising bar owner or restauratuer took the sellers up on their offer.

January 18, 2006

Forbes reports on Photo-Me UK’s recent earnings report and the slump in their stock price that followed this week.

Photo-Me International PLC posted a 10 pct decline in first-half profit and warned full-year earnings will fall well short of market expectations after customers put off purchasing digital photo-processing machines.

Shares in the British company, which is the world’s biggest photo-booth operator, slumped as much as 35 pct to a two-and-a-half-year nadir.

Closer to home, Photo-Me reports that due to a series of delays, they “would not be able to supply leading US drugstore chain CVS Pharmacy with equipment this fiscal year,” a failure that made up the bulk of their profit shortfall for the year. Things don’t look great for the company right now — “decline,” “short,” “slumped,” and “nadir” aren’t a great way to be described — so what’s really going on over there? We’ll be interested to find out.

January 14, 2006

phony_photobooth_blog.jpgThanks to my daily perusal of photobooth news and a number of tips from readers, we came across a recent bit on The Tonight Show called the “Phony Photobooth.”

In the episode, a photobooth at Universal Studios Hollywood has been rigged as a “Free Photobooth,” complete with hidden cameras, microphones, and speakers in order capture booth-goers’ reactions to the things they’re asked to do for free photos.

The booth is a digital one, and the photos used on the show aren’t even real digital strips, but it’s a fun piece to watch; you can see the complete bit at YouTube (link dead, thanks Steve) this site.

Brian | 11:45 am | TV
January 05, 2006

With the announcement of the 2005 selections for the National Film Registry, the number of films with photobooth or photostrip appearances in them that have been deemed by the Library of Congress to have “cultural, historical or aesthetic significance” has risen to two out of a total of 425 on the list. 

David Holzman’s Diary (1968) was added in the registry’s third year, 1991, and this year, Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) was added. 

The National Film Registry was created in 1989, and each year, 25 films are added to the list. “For each title named to the Registry, the Library of Congress works to ensure that the film is preserved for all time, either through the Library’s massive motion picture preservation program at Dayton, Ohio, or through collaborative ventures with other archives, motion pictures studios, and independent film makers.”

Brian | 8:17 am | Movies
January 02, 2006

A very nice looking Model 14 photobooth is for sale on eBay. It has the original pagoda-style roof and looks to be in really good condition. The topsign (which I also assume comes with the auction) is in great shape, as well.

And if that doesn’t fill your pop culture quota, bid on two photostrips of Bam Margera (Jackass fame) and his once-fiancee Jenn Rivell.

Oh, and Happy New Year from