Way back in the day, before human ingenuity blessed us with the miracle of digital photography, you actually had to think before you took a picture. Why, in my day we couldn’t just cast around taking hundreds of pictures willy-nilly with our cameras and iPhones and hula-hoops and dungarees; we had to stop, analyze the situation, and make sure we were getting the best possible photo for our money. Yes, it’s true – we had to pay for every single picture we took, and every stray thumb in the lens or backlit silhouette of Aunt Debbie was hard-earned money down the drain. And often you wouldn’t know your pictures were terrible until weeks later when they came back from the photomat – stupid 70s people!
But thanks to former Disney sponsor GAF, those avocado loving, AMC Pacer driving victims of stagflation could pick up a few handy tips to maximize their film budget and keep the folks back home entertained. We’ve already talked about my favorite tip from this list, but there are many other wise words here – even for all you kids today from the digital generation!
OK. Steady camera… watch the focus… thumb out of the way… Good to go. Thank heavens I have plenty of fresh tungsten film!
Here, of course, we learn that it’s good to have your family recognizable in photos – but not too many. Also, we can see that they used to sell sweet his-and-hers child ponchos at the Magic Kingdom. Nothing said Disney in the 1970s more than mouse ears and a pink sarape, that’s for sure! Maybe they had been to the Pueblo Room at the Contemporary?
Also notice the lack of a canopy over the teacups.
GAF also kindly gave us some tips for home movies – pan slowly, zoom sparingly, and always wind your motor. All good advice, even today. I laughed out loud at the highlighted rule that a scene should last a minimum of five full seconds to be enjoyed and understood. Maybe I can slip this guide to the folks that make the mail-order Disney Parks promo videos or that produce the Christmas Parade – I think they’ve accidentally misread it as five picoseconds per edit. And NEVER ZOOM AND PAN AT THE SAME TIME! I’m sending that one to Michael Bay.
And it would take 100,000 flashbulbs to light Cinderella’s Castle at night, so don’t even try. Is it me, or is this guide a little snippy? “Fifteen different shots of the Cinderella Castle are fine for a ‘castle picture collection'” – what a burn! Stupid tourists with your memories!
So take these tips to heart, shutterbugs. And the next time you’re in the Kingdom don’t forget these valuable tips – or GAF will come to your house and mock you to your face!