Sunday, November 10, 2013

Vintage postcard: Bathing beach at Cleveland's Gordon Park

This unused, split-back postcard was published by Century Post Card Co. of Cleveland, Ohio. It shows a very crowded beach at Gordon Park, which opened in 1893 along the shoreline of Lake Erie in Cleveland. According to Michael Rotman, writing on Cleveland Historical:
"A grand bathhouse catered to the multitudes who crowded onto the park's beach, and the city also provided facilities for boaters, fishermen, and picnickers. Meanwhile, further inland, south of the beach, wooded areas and formal gardens provided quiet retreats for those seeking a more relaxed atmosphere."

This is a good example of a hand-colored postcard. These closeups show the quality of some of the work done by the artist.

Obviously, hand-coloring had it limitations and it was easy for the work to get sloppy and/or look a bit ridiculous at times.

But it would be a bit hypocritical for me to criticize the use of spot color too much. Twenty years ago, when I was a young and sometimes silly sports editor at The Gettysburg Times, I was responsible for orchestrating this absurd use of spot color on a black-and-white photo in the October 15, 1993, edition of the Times:

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