Beautiful Photography by Lewis Hine

Child Labor Exposed: The Legacy of Photographer Lewis Hine

A camera was an improbable weapon against the growing evil of child labor in the early years of the 20th century. Then, children as young as five years old were working long hours in dirty, dangerous canneries and mills in New England.

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Lewis Wickes Hine, a former schoolteacher, cleverly faked his way into places where he wasn’t welcome and took photos of scenes that weren’t meant to be seen. He traveled hundreds of thousands of miles, exposing himself to great danger.  His exertions were ultimately rewarded with a law banning child labor in 1938. He was born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin on Sept. 26, 1874, and came late to photography.

Lewis Hine was educated as a sociologist at the University of Chicago, during the years when John Dewey and Thorstein Veblen were on its faculty. He continued his education at New York and Columbia Universities, and taught at the School of Ethical Culture. (Among his students there was Paul Strand, whom Hine introduced to photography.) Hine was past thirty when he seriously took up photography; by instinct and by training he conceived of the medium as a means of studying and describing the social conditions around him. As a 30-year-old prep school teacher at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School in New York City when he got a bright idea: He would bring his students to Ellis Island to photograph the thousands of immigrants who arrived every day. Over five years he took more than 200 plates; but more importantly, he realized he could use photography to try to end child labor.

CHILD LABOR COMMITTEE – In 1908, Hine got a job for the National Child Labor Committee, reformers who fought the growing practice of child labor. Between 1880 and 1900, the number of children between 5 and 10 working for wages had increased by 50 percent. One in six small children were then mining coal, running spinning machines, selling newspapers on the street or otherwise gainfully employed. They were robbed of an education and a childhood, trapped in a downward spiral of poverty.

Newsies – telegraph messengers and young mill workers were exposed to vice and abused by their employers, their customers and even their parents.

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Hartford newsboy Tony Casale, 11, in 1909. He had been selling newspapers for four years, and sometimes until 10 p.m. His boss said his father bit him on the arm for not selling more papers. Said Tony, “Drunken men say bad words to us.”

Graflax – Over the years, Hine photographed children working in gritty industrial settings that inspired a wave of moral outrage. With a new camera called the Graflex he took photos of child labor throughout New England. Hine was one of the masters of the splendid new camera. For the first fifty-odd years of photography, the photographer had to compose and focus his picture upside-down on a ground glass in the back of his camera, then insert the holder that held the sensitive plate. Once the plate was in the camera, the photographer was shooting blind, unable to change either his framing or his focusing. With the Graflex on the other hand, he saw his picture just as the camera would record it until the very instant that he pushed the trigger. This meant that he could frame his subject boldly, to the very edges of the plate; he could change his angle of view at the last moment; he could focus selectively on the most important plane of his subject, allowing the nearer and farther planes to be recorded out of focus. His picture is characteristic of the new kind of graphic economy and forcefulness that Hine helped discover for photography.

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Addie Card, a 10-year-old spinner in the North Pownal, Vermont Cotton Mill, 1910. Hine described her as ‘Anaemic little spinner.’ Her image appeared on a postage stamp and in a Reebok ad, and she inspired the novel ‘Counting on Grace.’

Hine traveled far beyond the giant textile mills of Lowell and Lawrence, Mass. He went to silk and paper mills in Holyoke, Mass., textile and upholstering plants in Manchester, New Hampshire, a cotton mill in North Pownall, Vermont, and cotton mills in Scituate, Rhode Island.

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Phoebe Thomas, an 8-year-old Syrian girl, at 6 a.m. She was on her way to work cutting sardines at the Seacoast Canning Co., in Eastport, Maine. Later that day she nearly cut her thumb off.

He went to the canneries in Eastport, Maine, where he saw children as young as seven cutting fish with butcher knives.  Accidents happened — a lot. “The salt water gets into the cuts and they ache,” said one boy.

RELUCTANT EMPLOYERS
Employers didn’t want their practices exposed. Photo historian Daile Kaplan described how Hine operated: Nattily dressed in a suit, tie, and hat, Hine the gentleman actor and mimic assumed a variety of personas — including Bible salesman, postcard salesman, and industrial photographer making a record of factory machinery — to gain entrance to the workplace. Hine might tell a plant manager he was an industrial photographer taking pictures of machines. At the last minute he would ask if a child laborer could stand near the machine to show its size. He also interviewed mill owners, parents and local officials, pioneering tactics still used by 60 Minutes.

hine-cigarmakersThe Factory: Young cigar makers in Engelhardt & Co. Three boys under 14. Labor leaders in busy times employed many small boys and girls. Youngsters all smoke. Tampa, Florida.

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Three boys, 13 and 14 years old, picking shade-grown tobacco on Hackett Farm. The “first picking” necessitates a sitting posture. Buckland, Connecticut.

Hine confronted public officials with evidence and asked for a response. He asked the children about their lives. He told one heartbreaking story about a child laborer who worked in a cannery, so young and beaten down she couldn’t tell him her name.

Russell Freedman, in his book, Kids at Work: Lewis Hine and the Crusade Against Child Labor, wrote,  “At times, he was in real danger, risking physical attack when factory managers realized what he was up to…he put his life on the line in order to record a truthful picture of working children in early twentieth-century America.”

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Miners: A young driver in the Brown Mine. Works 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Brown, West Virginia.

Years of political battles followed, until finally in 1938 Congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act. The law prohibits any interstate commerce of goods produced by children under the age of 16. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed it into law on June 25, 1938.

By then, the public had lost interest in Lewis Hine’s work. He died two years later, broke, in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. His son offered to donate his photographs to the Museum of Modern Art, but MOMA rebuffed him. Today, Hine’s photographs of child labor belong to collections at the Library of Congress and the George Eastman House in Rochester, N.Y.

The National Child Labor Committee Collection at the Library of Congress consists of more than 5,100 photographic prints and 355 glass negatives.

And today there is a Lewis Hine award for people who have done outstanding work in helping young people.

 

Beautiful Toys by Charles & Ray Eames

Serious Fun

Taking inspiration from the humble cardboard box, Ray and Charles Eames created toys and furniture to spark the imagination of kids and adults alike. A central tenant of the design philosophy of Ray and Charles Eames was an embrace of play as an end in itself, the idea that creativity should be unconstrained and unburdened. While the couple will always be remembered for their contributions to furniture, design and cinema, it was their approach to experimentation, and their interest in seemingly tangential topics such as clowns, that inspired their seemingly endless sense of wonder and a constant drive towards exploration and improvement. As champions of those beliefs, it only goes to follow that they’d also be some of the world’s foremost toy designers.

Ray and Charles Eames took child’s play seriously. They invented playthings, furniture, and films to spark, but never limit, the young imagination. Given their own ideas of fun, these toys tended to emphasize composition, structure, and building, giving children the tools of their own adult trades in miniature (and giving some adults the chance to make like children again). Many of their designs embrace what kids and parents have long known: that the box an item comes in, especially if it’s a very large item, can be more exciting than the contents.

So it comes as no surprise that the Eameses improved the box itself, as a portfolio of photographs unearthed from the Herman Miller Archives reminds us. The humble cardboard box offers children their first chance to make space for themselves, whether that’s a race car, a robot, or a house, sprouting from the shipping container the Eames Office designed in 1951 for the Eames Storage Units (ESUs).

Printed in a colorful red and black design, and featuring the distinctive Herman Miller ‘M,’ the heavy cardboard carton, reinforced with wood splines, had only to be re-nailed to the bottom wood skid, after the furniture had been removed, to be made into a playhouse youngsters would love, reads text from a draft press release. A separate leaflet offers instructions on “How to Make a Playhouse,” but it should have been self-explanatory: dotted lines suggest locations for an entrance and a view out, as well as jaunty awnings.

In one fell swoop, the Eameses managed to combine adult and child fun, eliminate waste, and add excitement to the mundane process of delivery. The up arrows, as well as the deep V of the logo “M,” designed by Irving Harper for the company, suggest the possibility of upward expansion into a miniature townhouse or skyscraper, should a child or parent need more furniture.

The ESUs themselves were also a kind of demountable toy for grownups. Made of perforated steel extrusions with diagonal bracing, they could be configured as low credenzas or high bookshelves. Buyers could customize the interior arrangement, selecting plywood drawers or doors, and perforated metal or enameled Masonite filler panels. Owners could also take them apart and rearrange or add on, treating the furniture as a series of modular boxes‑ furniture as toy.

As adults designing playthings intended for children, the Eameses found more inspiration in boxes. The Toy, manufactured by Tigrett Enterprises in 1951, offered children the chance to make their own prefabricated structure, one more colorful and flexible than Carton City. The Eameses had first been in touch with Tigrett about manufacturing large, bright, paper-and-cardboard animal masks based on those they used for skits and photo shoots in the late 1940s. The Memphis-based company was run by the highly entrepreneurial John Burton Tigrett, who made his fortune selling the Glub-Glub duck and may have been looking for more patentable products. The masks never made it out of the prototype stage, but the simpler and more geometric Toy did.

The Toy combined thin wooden dowels, pipe cleaners, and a set of square and triangular stiffened-paper panels in green, yellow, blue, red, magenta, and black. Children could run the dowels through sleeves on the edges of the panels to strengthen them, and then attach these struts at the corners. Initially sold in a big, flat box via the Sears catalog, the Eameses soon redesigned this packaging as well, creating a far more elegant 30-inch hexagonal tube, into which all parts could be rolled and stored.

The first version of the Toy made spaces big enough for children to inhabit, like the cartons. The Little Toy, released in 1952, was scaled more like an architectural model, allowing children to radically reinterpret the dollhouse. (The office later prototyped a modern model house for Revell, but it never went into production.) The Little Toy boxes, which feature a grid of colorful rectangles and words, resemble the panelized arrangement of the Eames House façade and the ESUs, and all of these products, at their various scales, were being developed at the Eames Office within the same few years.

Charles Eames once said of the work done out of the Eames Office, “We work because it’s a chain reaction, each subject leads to the next.” The connection to the ESU cartons and The Toy is immediately apparent in the longest-lived of the modular, paper-based playthings to come out of the Eames Office, the House of Cards.

In the voiceover for “Toccata for Toy Trains,” Charles Eames says, “In a good old toy there is apt to be nothing self-conscious about the use of materials. What is wood is wood; what is tin is tin; and what is cast is beautifully cast.” He could have added, in reference to the couple’s own toys, what is cardboard is cardboard, and then talked about the qualities that make it an ideal building material: its strength, its low cost, its ability to withstand a judicious number of cuts and slots.

Why Magazine by Alexandra Lange

Beautiful Amazing Kindergarten

Today, I present one of those projects that takes your breath away. It is designed by Emmanuelle Moreaux and it’s a beautiful kindergarten full of color, a stimulating environment where kids can let their imagination run free. Every child should be so lucky to go to school to attend a learning environment like this.

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I love the use of color, a common feature that runs throughout the space. The school, Creche Ropponmatsu, is located in a residential area in Fukuoka, Japan. Emmanuele Moreaux designed this crazy, whimsical project – color is common theme throughout many of her projects. The result is amazing. Emmanuelle designed the architecture, interior space, logos and graphical signage, with a vision to open a new kindergarten where children can grow up freely in mind and body. Running behind the colorful grove, this kindergarten gives opportunity for children to raise rich sensibility by feeling many colors wherever they are.

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THREE-DIMENSIONAL COLORS AND ELEMENTS
Color is apparent in every corner of the space. 22 colors were used in the 63m height trees on the façade. The branches appear to wrap the entire building, protecting it, perhaps, from the less colorful world outside. Collections of color jump out at one glance. On the facade, there are 22 colors used in 63 multi-colored trees of 4 m in height extend the branches rhythmically and wrap the building. While giving full-sized glass with a feeling of openness, by wrapping it with colorful trees, gives a sense of distance to the outside. Inside, 200 colorful boxes in 25 colors are lined up on the wall, where each one of them belongs to every child to stock their personal goods. Every time children use their own tools or get changed, they find and pick up the box of their color.

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The stairs which connect the 4 floors is also full of colors, 18 different tones in fact. This creates an environment where kids are surrounded by diversity inside, outside and in common zones. Stimulation with colors and shapes is crucial for kids at this age – experts claim that color helps kids to develop their sensitivity and individuality.

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DETAILS IN THE LOGO
Colorful trees on the façade have been also included in the logo, a perfect representation.

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Learn more about her colorful projects here 

Beautiful Gallery Walls For Kids

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Gallery walls look great and they’re a quick way to update a room that needs a bit of life or to change the look for a new season. Gallery walls can be made up of art in frames or frame-less art taped to the wall. The art can be hung up in an organized manner or in an eclectic, random manner. But it doesn’t stop at art. In a kid’s room, you can use toys, decorations, clothes and lots more to make your wall unique to your kid. There are so many ways to create an interesting gallery wall, it just depends on your personality and style.

Here are some more fun ways to create a gallery wall in your kid’s room:

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If you prefer a more streamlined look, a gallery wall like the one above is the one for you. The key is to pick prints that are similar in style and in color tones. All the prints above are very similar to the type of art and the colors are in similar tones too.  This creates a stylish and interesting look.

For a playful and very creative take on a gallery wall, you don’t need any art at all. Instead, we love how they’ve used just the frame and placed some little toys that act as 3D art.  And the addition of other toys, clothes, and decorations adds to the charm of this very fun wall.

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Kids create a ton of art so why not turn their art into their very own art gallery? We’re loving the informality of simply taping all the art to the wall and also we love how the whole wall is covered. So fun and colorful. The mix of the child’s art and shop bought art, works really well too.  This kind of gallery wall is so personal and can be changed up in minutes, as often as you like.

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Article and photo Credits

Beautiful Kid Spaces

How to crate a beautiful, cool, functional space for kids.

VINTAGE-DESK-WITH-HOUSE-SHELF-AND-DOTTY-WALL-FROM-PINTERESTSeptember is almost here and that can only mean one thing: back-to-school time! But homework doesn’t have to be boring – and neither does your child’s desk. Whether it’s for homework, drawing, coloring or simply chilling with a favorite book, study spaces can be both functional AND fun.

Here’s how:

1. Choose an area that works within the room

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Image sourced from Van Staeyen

Placing a table along the length of the room (as pictured above) makes an area that may otherwise not be used for anything, useful – especially in a loft or attic room like this one. It’s light and bright, thanks to the window and the cheerful sunshine yellow and white, with plenty of desktop space for every activity you can think of! Don’t forget alcoves, unused corners, underneath loft beds, and even cupboards – they can make perfect study zones too!

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Image sourced from The Land of Nod

2. Hang a shelf

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Image sourced from Estiloescandinavo

If you don’t have a lot of space, consider hanging a wall-mounted shelf instead. Simple and smart, yet effective as well. If it’s next to a wall, even better – hang some extra storage for all those arty bits and pieces and to help keep everything tidy and organized. And don’t forget all that extra space underneath the desk. Stack some storage boxes, bins or baskets to stash away all the mess when work and play is over.

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Image sourced from En Suus

3. Choose a colored chair or stool

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Image sourced from Saarkeloves on Instagram

These Ikea steps look amazing painted in bright colors and used as stools. Love how the drawers divide up the two areas whilst serving as functional desktop legs, not to mention brilliant storage for paper, pens, crayons and books.

Likewise, these sweet vintage chairs in this kids’ room (below) add a pop of bright color whilst being perfectly in keeping with the style of the room:

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Image sourced from Coosje 

4. Decorate!

Colored paint, wallpaper, wall stickers and wall art all help to add color and character to the walls, giving the study area its own identity. This simple yet creative two-tone ‘mountain’ design on the wall, which defines the corner and separates it out from the rest of the room:

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Image sourced from Wildones

How cool is this grey and white cloud wallpaper for the alcove surrounding the desk?

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5. Add a peg board

A simple pegboard above the desk is decorative, functional as storage and the perfect solution for displaying their creative masterpieces:

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Image sourced from Aimee Weaver
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Image sourced from Pretty Life Girls 
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Image sourced from Petit and Small

So, whether it’s for a 2, 12 or 22-year-old, you can keep the study space both fun and functional by adding elements such as a bright chair or stool, a colorful shelf or pegboard or a decorative wall feature through paint, wallpaper or wall art. And let’s face it – when you have kids, there is plenty of wall art to display.

For more ideas visit petitandsmall.com

Beautiful Photography

We all go through childhood, but no two experiences are alike. Whether it’s culture, class, and/or geography, it all shapes these formative years in a powerful way. But despite these differences, as young people, we each explore the world around us with the same sense of wonder and imagination. These varied snapshots highlight a universal truth about life—this juxtaposition of emotion starts when we’re young and never ends. We just grow older and wiser. Can you see yourself in any of these?

01.pic olga ageeva.jpgPlaying with light, by Olga Ageeva, Russia

02.pic oriano.jpgLooking Out, by Oriano Nicolau, Spain

03.pic anna.jpgThe Horse Whisperer, by Anna Ajtner, The Netherlands

04.pic olga.jpgSleeping, by Olga Ageeva, Russia

05.pic hutchins.jpgLooking For the Queen, By Hutchins, Poland/USA

06.pic zhou.jpgChildren of the Indian Ocean Seaboard, Guomiao Zhou, China

07. batman annaBatman, Anna Kuncewicz, Poland

08.chelseaClassic Couch Potato, Chelsea Sibereis, USA

09.boyhood.jpgBoyhood, Alicja Pietras, Poland

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Double, Karen Osdieck, USA

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Plums, Mariola Glajcar, Poland

Beautiful Dr. Seuss

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

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Born Theodor Seuss Geisel in Springfield, Massachusetts (1904). He went to Dartmouth College, where he was editor in chief of his college’s humor magazine. One night, he was caught drinking gin in his room with a group of friends, which was not only against the school rules but also illegal under Prohibition. He wasn’t kicked out, but he had to resign from all his extra-curricular activities, including the humor magazine. Geisel couldn’t quite accept this turn of events, so he continued contributing to the magazine but used a pseudonym: “Seuss.” It was his middle name and his mother’s maiden name.

In the fall of 1936 he wrote And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street (1937). His manuscript was rejected more than 20 times; editors disliked the fantasy, the exuberant language, and the lack of clear morals. One day, after receiving yet another rejection, he finally decided to give up and burn his manuscript. He was thinking about this as he walked down Madison Avenue in New York, when he bumped into an old classmate from Dartmouth, who had recently become a children’s book editor for Vanguard Press. After hearing his story, the classmate took Geisel back to his office and introduced him to some executives, and it wasn’t long before he had a book deal. He said later: “If I had been walking down the other side of Madison Avenue, I’d be in the dry-cleaning business today.” For the next 20 years, Geisel continued to publish children’s books and work on cartoons and ad campaigns. And he drew posters for the war effort during World War II.

In 1954, Life magazine published an article about the low rates of literacy among elementary-aged children across the nation. The writer concluded that most primer books, of the Dick and Jane variety, were just too boring to engage and teach kids. The editor at the education division of Houghton Mifflin gave Seuss a list of about 250 words and challenged him to write a book that a first-grader would love, using only those words. Seuss agreed, expecting it would be a quick project, but he found it extremely difficult even to get started. Not only did he have a very small list to work from, but he also was accustomed to making up nonsense words, which he couldn’t do. He kept coming up with ideas but was unable to express them with such a limited vocabulary. Finally, he decided that he would read through the list once again, and if he could find two words that rhymed, that would be the subject of the book. He saw “cat” and “hat,” and he had a title. A year and a half later, he had completed the manuscript using 236 words. When The Cat in the Hat (1957) was published, it was an unprecedented commercial and critical success, and made Seuss a household name. And the rest, as they say, is history.
– Writer’s Alamanac

He said: “I like nonsense; it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living; it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope.”