The Rest of the Story
For over thirty years, Paul Harvey revealed the backstories of ordinary people and events on his radio show, The Rest of the Story. Alfred Watson’s photographs also have a backstory, including this 1949 portrait of his youngest daughter, Carol.
Taken in Watson’s Buffalo home studio, Carol had no interest in being photographed that day and began running around with a light bulb she’d found in the garbage. Stubbornly refusing to give up her new toy, Watson eventually took it from her, and the toddler looked up at him in despair.
It was that look that he captured thru his lens.
Initially filing the photo away, it was not until Watson heard the 1961 Peggy Lee song, Oh Love Hast Thou Forsaken Me, that he decided to title his photograph Forsaken Am I, and to submit it for exhibition.
The print was ultimately accepted for exhibition although some thought the poignant photo was the result of the Watson’s harshness towards his daughter. That criticism was totally unfounded.
And how do I know? Because I was the child in the photograph, and my sister, who was also present during the session, never tired of reminding me how badly I behaved that day.
In the mid 40s, the term “Fascinator” described a crocheted scarf, such as the one modeled by my sister, Barbara, on the right. She had seen a similar scarf on the cover of Life Magazine in January 1945, and begged my parents for one which she received on her 7th birthday on June 14, 1946.
Assuming the same pose as the model on Life cover, my sister posed for her portrait in a black velvet dress with lace sleeves. Her large eyes and demure smile accurately revealed her sweet personality.