Old pictures have always given me a strange feeling for one reason or another. It can be a simple picture of a family or some scenery, but the grainy-ness manages to give me an uneasy feeling that I have trouble putting into words. Maybe it's the lack of color. Not knowing exactly how these images looked in-person is just one of those weird things that leaves me staring at such pictures for longer than it probably should. Haunted Air is a collection of Halloween-themed photographs from 1875-1955, presented neatly like a photo album. As you can see in my video, the book has one picture on a page, very rarely using the back of the page to display another picture. I'm 50/50 on this, as leaving it blank ensures that the picture shown will be getting your full attention, but at the same time, it's mentioned in the introduction that the man who collected all of these pictures, Ossian Brown, had many more than what's shown here. These just happen to be some of his favorites. The guy did a great job picking photographs that will keep your interest though, that's for sure.
Maybe it's just me, but looking at these pictures of long gone people in crude masks and costumes, there's something strange about it all. And yet, they're just posing for a picture! Once again, it's the lack of color and picture quality that causes me to create stories in my head of what could possibly be going on. A child dressed up as a cat on all fours by himself, a group posed in front of the American flag, several people in the back of a truck...what exactly were these people doing? Nothing bad, I'm sure, but I still can't help but think. It sounds paranoid, I know. Just look at some of the images and see for yourself, and let your mind run free with the images.
There are only a very few photographs with any writing or text on them. The one that caught me by surprise was one towards the end of the book. It's a picture of four people dressed up, except we can't make out their faces/masks. The top portion of the photo has a heavy shadow over everything, and you can only make out an eye here and there. Above the picture someone wrote "Four of your old friends" and their names after that.
Don't get me wrong- the book didn't give me nightmares, and I'm not scared of it. It's just weird going back in time like this with one theme. Definitely a cool book that I'm happy to own.