Exploring the history of Phoenix, Arizona, just for fun. Advertising-free, supported by my patrons on Patreon. Thank you!

Sharing photos of historic Phoenix


When I first started poking around my garage many years ago, opening boxes that had been there for over a decade, I began the process of sharing photos of historic Phoenix. It was actually just a side-effect of my wanting to spend more time on this new thing called the internet. I'm a graphic designer, but I was slow in getting into web design. But one day I decided to learn it, and it was just about writing a simple script (or code as some people call it) in HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) and inserting images as jpegs (Joint Photographers Expert Group). Around the year 2001 it was pretty primitive, and pretty simple.

So I scanned in some cool old pics of Phoenix, just because I liked them. I created web pages because I learn best by doing, and I did a lot of them. In a few years I had a LOT of them out there, mostly just practice stuff, like web pages for my dog. And when CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) were added to HTML I updated the pages with that. And the two pages that I kept going back to I called "Phoenix, Rising from the Ashes", and I even had designed a logo for that, and the History of Street Names in Phoenix, Arizona. And over the years I would go back to them and update them, usually when a new thing was invented for the web, like animated gifts, or Flash animation. And then at one point I lost interest in web design, and it moved over to the Phoenix stuff.

Somewhere around the invention of Google+, which was 2011, I created a "business page" there for my Phoenix photos. Of course it wasn't a business at all, it was just my hobby, and the whole point was really to make it easier for me to post photos with captions. And that's about the time I started writing in this blog, which is a whole lot easier than assembling all of the pieces in HTML. And since I was never in the business of selling photos of Phoenix, it just came naturally for me to be pleased if people liked them. Like I say, I learn best by doing, so I used the Phoenix images to do a lot of things, including a Patreon page, which I created two years ago. This is as close as I come to "commercializing" what I do, and I like the concept of people who enjoy what I'm doing giving me some financial support. I won't get rich on Patreon, but that's not the point. The point is that I want to keep doing this. Of course there are always going to be people who are skeptical about anything, and I can't help them. If they don't understand, I let it go.

Over the years I've put together a gigantic digital collection, almost 10,000 images at last count. They're up on my server, and will remain there as long as I pay my yearly fee for my website, and my domain, which is bradhallart.com . But, and not to get all emotional here, that won't last forever, because I won't. So I'd like to see people take them, share them, pass them around. There's no guarantee that this will happen, of course, but the chances are much better than if I left boxes sitting in my garage until someone had to haul them to the dump.

Here is the collection so far, as a raw index file: http://bradhallart.com/images_phoenix and yes, I want you to use them, take them, copy them, pass them around. My heart breaks to think that these images would ever be lost, and this seems to be the best I can do to give them a chance to go on living long after I'm gone.

And by the way, don't worry about me - I'm in robust health, and I plan on doing this for many years to come. My patrons on Patreon help to offset my costs, and I very much appreciate that. If that's you, thank you very much, and if you're pondering it, please do. I'm not doing a "for profit" operation here, I just want to be able to go on sharing, and as usual, I could use all the help that I can get. Thank you!

Image at the top of this post: The Maypole Dance at Tempe High School in 1913, Mill Avenue and 8th Street (now University), Tempe, Arizona.

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