Growing up on a farm, there were two seasons, farming season and not-farming season. From November to March, there isn't a lot to do to keep a farmer busy. At least in my family there wasn't because we didn't have livestock. In the fall, I would watch my dad bring home trailers of wrecked cars, fix them up over the winter and sell them. As a teenager I had dozens of cars and have some pretty funny stories about all of those different cars, but we'll save that for another post, another day. Let's just say my school day would start out with my Dad handing me a set of keys with the instructions "Drive this to school today and tell me what's wrong with it."
I learned a lot from my Dad in more ways than one, but for now, we'll discuss work ethic. A lot of people with seasonal businesses look forward to relaxing, reading books, watching lots of TV during their down time. I don't look at it that way. Even though I'm 25 years removed from a farm, I am still a farmer's daughter and that means there is always something to do.
The jobs for photography are really limited to spring through fall. There are some photographers that make a living throughout the winter but that's just not me. I could make this all about the technical and the equipment failures in cold weather but the truth is, it's me. I don't like being cold.
So, what's a gal like me supposed to do during November through March? I pour through ideas in magazines, savoring the ideas for when I get to go back out in the spring. But, most of all, I work on restorations on the computer. I LOVE repairing old faded, torn, damaged photographs to return the original glory of a photo. I LOVE returning a "new" original to my clients and hear them talk about the original people in the photo and tell me how they can't wait to get copies to their family members.
One recent set of clients happened to be my new Father and Mother-in-law. They had an old group photo that was damaged in one particular area. That area was where everyone pointed to his Dad in the group shot. Grandpa's poor face got the brunt of the damage from fingernails pointing him out for over 50 years. Once there was a new original, the stories came back up on how he got that job, what he did, and more importantly, how he met his future wife while working that job. Their union during this moment in American History produced a family that I eventually married into.
This picture below was taken during the fall of 1944 when the last of the A-20 bombers came off the assembly line at Douglas Aircraft in California. The men and women who are pictured were the same team that put the aircraft together. These are real life Rosie The Riveters. My husband's grandfather is pictured. My husband's grandmother was originally part of this group but she was at home with their new baby when the last A-20 came off the line.
If you are finding this through keyword searches and you think you may have ancestors in the photo, I also have the original typed roster of each individual in the group. Please contact me and I'll be happy to share with you the large resolution image along with the roster.
Here is a close up of some of the damage on the original.