Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Sightseer project

Just in time for summer! Remember those classic family vacations from childhood? You know, those long car trips where your parents would stop at every historical marker and make you pose for cheesy photos (National Lampoon's Vacation, anyone...)? Well, now you can relive those glory days thanks to photographer Roger Minick. For his Sightseer project, he captured photos of tourists at popular U.S. landmarks from the early '80s into the 2000s. "When I approached people for a portrait..I explained that my wife and I were traveling around the country visiting most of the major tourist destinations so that I could photograph the activity of sightseeing," says Minick. "I would quickly add that I hoped the project would have cultural value and might be seen in years to come as a kind of time capsule of what Americans looked like at the end of the Twentieth Century; at which, to my surprise, I would see people often begin to nod their heads as if they knew what I was talking about."

It looked like it worked based on the variety of photos in the project, including the family above at the Grand Tetons National Park in 1980. A few more of my favorites...
The Statue of Liberty in 2000
Twins at Yellowstone National Park in 1980
Couple at Mount Rushmore in 1998
Family at the United States Capitol in 1998
Kissing couple atop the Empire State Building in 2000
Father and son at Crazy Horse Monument in 1999
Family with Grandpa at the Grand Canyon in 1980
Family at Disney World in 2000

How interesting is that, friends? Who doesn't have a scrapbook full of photos like this? Do you have these sorts of photos from your childhood? Any horror stories of family vacations past? What's your favorite vacation from your childhood?

P.S. My own childhood vacations, including the Great Smoky Mountains, Dixie, the Wild West, the woods and California.

[Via Kottke]


  1. i know!! they brought back so many memories from my own childhood!

  2. I feel like digging thru old photos now! I'm sure we all have some of those family vacation pictures!!

  3. what a cool project! i used to love to pour over my grandparents photos. they had so many of them with my mom and uncles in destination spots: the grand canyon, the four corners, disneyland. i love the nostalgia. thanks for sharing!!

  4. Those photos? Great! What a neat project!

  5. Oh my gosh these bring back memories of vacations past for me!

  6. What a cool project, these photos are so fun. Love the first one.

    Ali of


  7. This is so fantastic! What a neat concept and brings up memories for so many people. I have a Niagara Falls picture much like this :)


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