For this third installment of vintage billboard photos, I have a gallery of roadside advertisements for local news broadcasts. Just about all of these date from the 1970s and '80s, and include ads for news broadcasts as well as local weather and sports teams. All images courtesy Duke University’s Digital Collections site. Click for a larger version.
In addition to their primary purpose in drumming up business for their company, airline travel posters of course wanted to get you in the mood to visit places all over the world. And without the benefit of a TV commercial, travel posters had to work overtime to help you paint a picture of exotic locales in your mind. Here are 20 such vintage travel posters that did their job exceptionally well, most dating from the 1950s and '60s. And if I may be allowed a shameless plug -- which I am -- I should tell you that some of these images are available as beautiful custom apparel and other products on my Zazzle shop. Why not go there now? Just click on The Hangar for all airline-related goods.
For this, the second volume featuring photographs of vintage billboard ads, I'm tightening the focus a bit. This group of billboards was displayed in the Phoenix, Arizona area in 1969 and advertised the new Phoenix Suns basketball team. The 1969-70 season was the franchise's second in the NBA, and it was the year they made a dramatic turnaround from 7th place to 3rd. This was thanks in large part to the addition of Connie Hawkins (#42, who appears in a few of the ads), who came from the ABA and went on to the Hall of Fame. Hawkins led the Suns to a 39-43 record, and they nearly won their first-ever playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers until they lost three straight games. All images courtesy Duke University's Digital Collections site. Click for a larger version. ...
I don't really pay much attention to billboard advertisements while I'm driving, unless it's something fairly snappy or unique. And as much as I'd like to romanticize old billboard ads, I think the medium as a whole has been fairly bereft of great ideas. And if you think about it, it makes sense. You're only going to see a billboard ad clearly for what, four or five seconds? So it's all about economy of ideas and design. Anything too complicated and you either lose a driver's interest or cause a 20-car pileup. Neither is good for business. I'm not holding this group of classic billboard ads up as the best ever, but I think you'll enjoy them nonetheless. These are all courtesy the Duke University Libraries Digital Collections advertising series. I can't decide which part of...
This seems as appropriate a time as any to republish one of my favorite photographs. This was taken at an Arizona Cardinals home game (in Sun Devil Stadium) on Veterans Day 2005. (click on the pic to see larger versions)
I have to say this is a pretty slick and ambitious spot for its time, even if the tag line doesn't quite work all the way. It's a spot for the nasal decongestant Dristan, which promises that using it is "like sending your sinuses to Arizona." I guess that means they'll be pulled over for no reason and forced to show their citizenship papers? Well never mind that, it's time for giant flying suitcase!!! OK, maybe I'm just an advertising geek, but that's just too cool. No, not the part in the beginning with the guy who looks like he's having heroin withdrawal -- the part with the giant flying suitcase. I'm going to watch that again.
I'll admit that I wasn't familiar with the term "blood libel" until this week. But then again, I'm not producing videos that somehow make me the center of attention during a time of national mourning. Unfortunately for Sarah Palin, the "try not to find yet another group to piss off" horse has already left the barn so it's too late for this fortune to do her any good. But then again, tomorrow's another day... Related articles Jewish Group Hits Back at Sarah Palin's 'Blood Libel' [The Jews] (gawker.com) Sarah Palin's "Blood Libel" Libel (slog.thestranger.com) Blood Libel Wikipedia Entry Hacked: Sarah Palin Photo Added (PICTURE) (huffingtonpost.com) Sarah Palin's 'blood libel' blunder | Peter Beaumont (guardian.co.uk)
Arizona governor Jan Brewer(R): and Terence Stamp as Bernadette Basinger/Ralph Waite in the 1994 gender-bending romp, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert: