I just spent a short weekend in Napa Valley. While there, I went tasting at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery (now renamed to Rubicon Estates), one of my favorites. At the winery, there was a fantastic display of old machines, devices, and ads for animated movies. The first ever moving picture machine was called the “wheel of life” or the “zoopraxiscope“. This is where you would look through a slit in a wheel and watch a series of photos move quickly by to create that famous running horse. There were several of these wheels on display along with larger machines in which one person could view at a time. In one of these machines, the pictures flipped towards you and there was a slightly risque movie of a woman with a large feather. Gotta love old “porn”.
The images above are some of the images and ads on display at the winery. I’m so in love with the typography on the “magic lantern” ads—the layout, the multiple type faces, the accompanying illustrations—beautiful. The colored gel was a great specimen, as well as the metal figure I’m calling a “puppet”. It looks like it belongs in an old kids’ theater. Pardon the cheap iphone shots, I do think the cheap camera worked well with the gel.