Christmas time is a time of peace, gratitude, and love. It’s also a time of evaluation, a period which allows us to finally sort out the good, the bad and the ugly of the year at its finish line. All in all, Christmas is not only about smiling faces, a shared carol and mulled wine. It’s also about the inevitable feelings of nostalgia, melancholia and yes, sadness, a subtle and beautiful wintertime sadness. Nevertheless, it is exactly the emotional contrast that makes the festivity so beautiful. My-Picture.co.uk takes a look at 10 interesting Christmas photos that show the other side of Noel – intriguing, possibly even sad, yet always meaningful.
Christmas in Cosmos 1968
How can there even be a thought about Santa and his squad of deers roaming the night sky when it’s one of ours up there! During the Christmas of 1968 for once, there was something more important, interesting and inviting than the set of neatly packed goodies under the stringed light-clad tree. A real-life Major Tom was floating in his tin can right above the moon, just like the little toy one of those received a year prior. Now imagine what a Christmas wonder seeing that spaceship must have been!
No Walls on Christmas
Now, there’s nothing particularly Christmassy about this picture. However, an entirely different perspective is unveiled once you become familiar with the historical context. This is one of the legal border crossings taking place in Berlin during the height of the Cold war (in 1963 to be more precise). Just for one day, during an 18 day period from December to January, the families of the east and west were allowed to meet each other to celebrate Christmas. It must be noted, though, that only westerners were allowed to cross. 700 000 used the unique opportunity that didn’t present itself again until 1989.
An Old Time One
On this occasion, we don’t have any specific narrative behind this besides the perfect encapsulation of the 50’s Americana Christmas. This is the golden age of radio, when the voice of Bing Crosby filled the room with an unrepeatable warm and protective vibe. Obviously, the Christmas spirit was something completely different back then, something very simple, yet, as it turns out, also very volatile
They surely knew how to celebrate Christmas in the Whitehouse during the 80’s! And who could be a better Santa than the warm-voiced “Teflon President”? Having Nancy Reagan in his lap, Ronald Reagan once again reminds us why he has gone down in history as one of the most beloved presidents of the U.S. It seems that the man was able to exude the Santa Claus vibe on a daily basis from 1981 to 1989.
It’s hard to tell whether this has anything to do with the famous truce of 1914, but it’s safe to say that the German side of the front was very keen on commemorating Christmas despite the rather unsuitable conditions. Regardless, decorating the Christmas tree with whatever was available while being on a gun alert at the same time is a rather evocative representation of the human spirit. In all the horror, there’s something to hold on to.
The Golden Age of Rockefeller’s Tree
It’s 1964, and the Rockefeller center Christmas decorations start to acquire the familiar form. With a Dustin Hoffman during his “Graduate” phase figure in the foreground, this photo seems to perfectly capture what it must have felt like to be in 60’s New York during Christmas time. Everything’s grand, authentic and interesting! It’s NYC at its prime!
A Time for Peace
Considering the time and the obviously incompatible subject matter, this Christmas photo comes off as a slightly disturbing one- Father Christmas riding what seems to be an authentic ballistic missile in 60’s Czechoslovakia. The arms of propaganda are always long and shameless, yet this brings it to another level. Surely, this particular Santa wouldn’t have used this simply as a means of faster travel around the world.
A Christmas Carol Under the Ground
During the Blitz, a high percentage of everyday life had to be spent in the tight and borderline claustrophobic environment of the bombing shelter. That, however, didn’t stop parents from trying to provide their kids with the best there is. This little princess had her own Noel cradle made-up from the very little available at the time. The idea of Christmas matters regardless of the hardships.
Guess the Year
So what do you think this is? Surely, it’s some kind of a toy store, but aside from the peculiar merchandise seen in the window, there’s nothing that indicates that this is, in fact, 1941. As you see, not much has changed. Boys and girls are still gathering around shop windows to cheerfully speculate about what from the displayed goods Saint Nick might bring this year. Here’s another one to prove how little the shop settings have actually changed!
One Last Time
And this is 1984. The original description says that this was the man’s last Christmas, making for an incredibly sad, yet poignant and powerful, image. Life at its glorious stage of completion.
My-Picture encourages you to simply embrace the Christmas holiday as it is. Appreciate the moment, take a sweet picture or two, and we might make something interesting out of it for you and your loved ones!