Saturday, March 27

Tenniel's Drawing Of Alice Was Not Correct

When Lewis Carroll had John Tenniel draw Alice for him he had a model and girl in mind. Alice Liddell was a neighbor girl who Carroll had photographed before. He was quite taken with her and based his heroines name on her, starting his book with her name.

When he first saw the drawings that Tenniel had done he was mortified that it didn’t look at all like Liddell and he had drawn her body totally out of proportion. The artwork stayed in the book and became a part of history, even though Carroll proclaimed his dislike for it publicly.

Alice Pleasance Liddell was born May 4th 1852 in Westminster, London.

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Alice Liddell, age 7, photographed by Charles Dodgson In 1860. Liddell dressed up as a beggar-maid.

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A rare photo of Liddell taken by Carroll in 1855.

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Alice Liddell as a young woman. She eventually got married to Reginald Hargreaves.

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Alice Hargreaves Liddell lived to be 82 and died on November 16th 1934.

Tenniel's pictures of Alice are not pictures of Alice Liddell, who had dark hair cut short with straight bangs across her forehead. Carroll sent Tenniel a photograph of Mary Hilton Badcock, another child friend, recommending that he use her for a model, but whether Tenniel accepted this advice is a matter of dispute. That he did not is strongly suggested by these lines from a letter Carroll wrote some time after both Alice books had been published. The letter is quoted by Mrs. Lennon in her book on Carroll;

"Mr. Tenniel is the only artist who has drawn for me, who has resolutely refused to use a model, and declared he no more needed one than I should need a multiplication table to work a mathematical problem! I venture to think that he was mistaken and that for want of a model he drew several pictures of "Alice" entirely out of proportion-head decidedly too large and feet decidedly too small."

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J. Tenniel's Alice

(The symbol at the lower right corner, which you see on all of Tenniel's drawings, is a monogram of his initials, J.T.

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John Tenniel created the Alice we see in the book.

In "Alice On Stage," an article cited in the first note on the prefatory poem, Carroll gave the following description of his heroine's personality:

What art thou, dream-Alice, in thy foster-father's eye? How shall he picture thee? Loving, first, loving and gentle: loving as a dog (forgive the prosaic simile, but I know no earthly love so pure and perfect), and gentle as a fawn: then courteous-courteous to all high or low, grand or grotesque, King or Caterpillar, even as though she were herself a King's daughter and her clothing of wrought gold: then trustful, ready to accept the wildest impossibilities with all that utter trust that only dreamers know; and lastly, curious-wildly curious, and with the eager enjoyment of Life that comes only in the happy hours of childhood when all is new and fair, and when Sin and Sorrow are but names-empty words signifying nothing!

Hearing Carroll describe his creation, "Alice" in his own words is such a treat!

Although many people think Carroll a pedophile that couldn’t keep away from 7 year old girls there is no proof that he ever took advantage of Liddell or any other young girl. He was a photographer, writer and true artist that based his fiction on fact like many others before him and had a great interest in children and childhood.

Through the many years since his writings "Alice" has held the imaginations and fantasies of more people than even he could ever have imagined. Through fan art, movies, books and video games "Alice" has had many personalities and faces and will continue to be with us forever.

Lewis Carroll has taught me that everyone has their own Wonderland that resides in each and everyone of us in our imaginations.

BackandforthAliceKeep On Bloggin’!

Will The Real Alice Please Stand Up?

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Charles Lutwidge Dodgson aka Lewis Carroll




Lewis Carroll had many talents besides his famous books. He was a mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon, poem writer, a good artist and photographer. Lewis Carroll is the pseudonym of Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. 

Before Lewis Carroll wrote his books about Alice In Wonderland he already had a girl in mind for his character. She was actually a neighborhood girl he was infatuated with and her name was Alice Liddell.




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Alice Pleasance Liddell aka Alice In Wonderland




Alice Liddell was not at all like the “Alice” we now are used to seeing with golden locks of hair brushed back from her blue eyed face. When Carroll thought of his Alice he pictured Alice Liddell. And his book was to start with her name.




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Alice Liddell, dressed up as a beggar-maid and photographed by Charles Dodgson




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Alice Liddell as a young woman




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Alice Liddell married Reginald Hargreaves and Alice Hargreaves lived to be 82




Even thought Carroll was an artist and did his own drawings for the very first book that he presented to Alice Liddell, when he finished his book to be published he had John Tenniel do the artwork for it.

John Tenniel was a cartoonist and his work was satirical, often radical for doing a book like Carroll’s but he did the drawings for Carroll’s works nonetheless and Carroll was not happy with the results.




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John Tenniel, illustrator, graphic humorist and political cartoonist/self portrait




Tenniel's pictures of Alice were not pictures of Alice Liddell, who had dark hair cut short with straight bangs across her forehead. Carroll sent Tenniel a photograph of Mary Hilton Babcock, another child-friend, recommending that he use her for a model, but whether Tenniel accepted this advice is a matter of dispute. That he did not is strongly suggested by these lines from a letter Carroll wrote some time after both Alice books had been published. The letter is quoted by Mrs. Lennon in her book on Carroll; 

"Mr. Tenniel is the only artist who has drawn for me, who has resolutely refused to use a model, and declared he no more needed one than I should need a multiplication table to work a mathematical problem! I venture to think that he was mistaken and that for want of a model he drew several pictures of "Alice" entirely out of proportion-head decidedly too large and feet decidedly too small."

From The Life Of Lewis Carroll by Florence Becker Lennon




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J. Tenniel's Alice




The symbol at the lower right corner, which you see on all of Tenniel's drawings, is a monogram of his initials, J.T.

I must say that I can see what Carroll means about Tenniel’s drawings. It does look like a “caricature” of Alice although I rather liked the strange drawings from the books. When I first read Alice In Wonderland I had no idea that a “real” Alice existed nor that Carroll didn’t like the art in the book.

The comparison with the fictional Alice has been a very controversial one. There are at least three direct links to Liddell in the first two books. First, he set them on May 4th, (Liddell's birthday) and November 4th, (her "half-birthday") and in Through the Looking-Glass the fictional Alice declares that her age is "seven and a half exactly", the same as Liddell on that date. Second, he dedicated them "to Alice Pleasance Liddell". Third, there is an acrostic poem at the end of Through the Looking-Glass. Reading downward, taking the first letter of each line; spells out Liddell's full name. The poem has no title in Through the Looking-Glass, but is usually referred to by its first line, "A Boat Beneath a Sunny Sky".




A Boat Beneath A Sunny Sky

A boat beneath a sunny sky,

Lingering onward dreamily In an evening of July--

Children three that nestle near,

Eager eye and willing ear,

Pleased a simple tale to hear--

Long has paled that sunny sky:

Echoes fade and memories die.

Autumn frosts have slain July.

Still she haunts me, phantom wise,

Alice moving under skies

Never seen by waking eyes.

Children yet, the tale to hear,

Eager eye and willing ear,

Lovingly shall nestle near.

In a Wonderland they lie,

Dreaming as the days go by,

Dreaming as the summers die:

Ever drifting down the stream--

Lingering in the golden gleam--

Life, what is it but a dream?




In "Alice On Stage," an article cited in the first note on the prefatory poem, Carroll gave the following description of his heroine's personality:

What art thou, dream-Alice, in thy foster-father's eye? How shall he picture thee? Loving, first, loving and gentle: loving as a dog (forgive the prosaic simile, but I know no earthly love so pure and perfect), and gentle as a fawn: then courteous-courteous to all high or low, grand or grotesque, King or Caterpillar, even as though she were herself a King's daughter and her clothing of wrought gold: then trustful, ready to accept the wildest impossibilities with all that utter trust that only dreamers know; and lastly, curious-wildly curious, and with the eager enjoyment of Life that comes only in the happy hours of childhood when all is new and fair, and when Sin and Sorrow are but names-empty words signifying nothing!

Hearing Carroll describe his creation, "Alice" in his own words is such a treat! Through the many years since his writings have been out "Alice" has held the imaginations and fantasies of more people than even he could ever have imagined. Through fan art "Alice" has had many personalities and faces and will continue to be with us forever.




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Example of fan art. Alice playing crochet with the Cheshire Cat discreetly watching




 Keep On Bloggin'! Keep On Bloggin'!

Tuesday, March 16

The New Alice In Wonderland Movie

A poster for the Disney movie directed by Tim Burton and for the first time, Wonderland is in 3D.

Before writing my review I read some other reviews from the news and was delighted to see that Alice In Wonderland, released on 3/5/10 is not only extremely popular to this day but also killed all the other opening movies released on that date. It just goes to show that Lewis Carroll’s stories are still loved and just as popular today. the movie is drawing in a huge amount of people loving the old story told anew.

As far as the other movies that opened on the same day this is how they faired against AIW. Green Zone,  teaming Matt Damon with Paul Greengrass (his director in the last two very popular Jason Bourne films) earned only $14.5 million in the first 3 days. That's way below industry predictions (which were in the low to middle $20 million mark) unlike less than a quarter of the $62 million made this weekend by the defending champ, Alice In Wonderland. AIW has leapt like a White Rabbit past the $200 million mark in just 10 days and it's gaining. The Tim Burton-Johnny Depp effort was also a war movie, at least partly but with the Red Queen and the White Queen.

How did Carroll get his idea for his books in the beginning? It started as a child's story created by a young man during his time spent with his bosses children in the 1850s. It has become a cherished classic and time and again, it's likeness has proven that it has staying power.

Lewis Carroll (pen name for Charles Dodgson as he was known then) first spotted a nearly 4 year old Alice Liddell in 1856 while she played in a garden. During a boat trip in 1862 he began a story about an adventure in a dizzying world full of peculiar creatures, a place called Wonderland. The star of the tale was none other than Alice Liddell the child who had sparked his fascination to a degree that some people would call an obsession.

On Christmas of 1864 Carroll presented Liddell with a completed manuscript, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Though Liddell and Carroll's time together would come to a mysteriously abrupt end sometime during the summer she turned 12 but Liddell would forever carry around the identity of the little girl who fell down the rabbit hole.

Carroll's story of little Alice rose to worldwide fame that had spawned an eclectic mix of adaptations. Some are demure childish romps while others are soaking with psychedelia.

Since the first stage show we have found Alice in film, musicals, comic books, video games and even porn. We seem to be just as obsessed with Alice as Carroll was and Hollywood certainly seems to have a never ending supply to meet the demand of the masses.

We've taken a look at the many faces of Alice throughout her history in Wonderland, from the unknown to Academy Award winning actresses and are hopeful that at least one can tell us exactly why a raven is like a writing desk.

I figured out what a raven is like a writing desk. Because they both carry notes! (Just my take on it.) 

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Down the rabbit hole she goes to return to Wonderland for the second time.

I saw this movie in 3D and it's also showing in 3D at Imax besides the regular movie fare. I was apprehensive at first because this movie was a long time coming and changed directors, actors, and was to be a gory American McGee Alice movie made like the popular video game. When it went to Disney I thought it would not please adults expecting the prior movie plans. I was pleasantly surprised!

The movie starts out with an older Alice who see's the white rabbit at her engagement party. She does not want to marry the man that her relatives want her to so she escapes and follows the white rabbit to the rabbit hole. As she is looking into it the dirt gives way and once again she finds herself in Wonderland. Only this Wonderland has gone wrong and is called Underland. Not only that but she can't remember being there the first time as a child and is very confused.

She is told by the Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat and White Queen that she had been there before and only she can change Underland back into Wonderland. She doesn't receive the news well especially the fact that to do this she has to go up against the Red Queen and fight her Jabberwocky to the death.

She fights against this and just wants to go home. Then she starts to feel for the Underland inhabitants. After being convinced she was there as a child she finally remembers her first visit and knows she must go through with it and change it back to the Wonderland they all knew and loved.

I liked the movie very much but I’m warning you now it’s not all in 3D which disappointed but didn’t ruin the movie for me. The actors were excellent and Johnny Depp didn’t steal the whole movie away from his co-actors although when he is in a movie it’s hard to ignore him, especially as the Mad Hatter.

It should appeal to all ages and with Tim Burton directing was very entertaining. The story of Alice’s comeback to Underland turning it back into Wonderland was a psychedelic trip and beautiful to behold.

Have fun seeing it and if you miss it on the big screen then it’s your loss. 

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Johnny Depp and Tim Burton

I hope you enjoyed my review and background information. I don’t usually give movie reviews but it being Alice In Wonderland I had to. I must say the movie it should have been about the Alice from the McGee’s Alice video game would have been much bigger and better but with Disney on board I’m not surprised it never happened. If someone from Hollywood is reading this please make a movie based on McGee’s Alice! It would rock and people would love it! It’s time we had a violent, fun Alice movie.

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Monday, March 15

Good-bye To Lap Top Computers?

This is new technology from Japan. What could these things that look like ink pens do? How can something like this replace laptop computers?

Read on to see just how cool this invention from Japan is.

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Look closely, how could these 6 pen sized objects be a computer?

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Are these pens with cameras or some kind of spy technology?

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Congratulations my friends you are looking into the future! You have just seen something that will replace your PC in the near future and here's how it works:

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In the revolution of micro parts and circuit boards, mini computers are coming into their own. Scientists have made great developments with bluetooth technology and this is what they came up with.

This is the forthcoming computer you can carry within your pockets.

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These 'pen sort of instruments' produces both the monitor as well as the keyboard on any flat surfaces from where you can carry out functions you would normally do on your desktop or laptop computers.

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I think this is an awesome discovery and I'm wondering how far something like this can go? I wonder how hard it is to fix it if it breaks and how much something like this would cost. How much disk space can it have? How does the mouse work? What kind of USB ports can it have? If these were cheap enough I'd certainly get one to use! Can any one say; "Good-bye laptops?"

Hope you enjoyed a glimpse into the future. Now, what did I do with that ink pen?

 photo headbangsoncomputer_t_01.gif  Keep On Bloggin'!