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My Kodak Moment
Diane Shiffman (Cal Garufo/Calart Studios)

Diane Shiffman (Cal Garufo/Calart Studios)

My Kodak moment actually belongs to my big sister, Diane. In 1958, she was 2 years old. Everyone was talking about “a new Kodak color film that wasn’t too expensive to use,” the way my mother tells the story. She dressed Diane in her Sunday best — white gloves included — and they went downtown to Calart Studio in East Boston, where Cal Garufo took her “Direct Color” portrait.

My parents loved the results. Garufo did too, asking them for permission to enter it in a local contest. He paid them $1 for the rights, which they signed away without second’s thought.

The photo won that contest, and then a national one as well.

Soon, Diane’s picture popped up in photo frames and on packages of Kodak film. My dad says he even saw it rotating around in New York’s Grand Central Station.

Over the years, the family joked that the photo could have paid for Diane’s college education. If only…

It’s been a half a century since that frame of Kodak film was exposed. Diane is all grown up, with an adult daughter of her own. Kodak has just filed for bankruptcy. And the picture, now faded, hangs in my father’s room in his assisted living facility.

The “Direct Color” may have lost some of its luster, but the memories burn as bright as the second that the shutter clicked.

-Karen Shiffman

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  • Sscc72

    Thank you, Paul Anka

  • http://www.facebook.com/hiebert1 Davidr Hiebert

    With one of his pictures of a daughter, one of my in-laws won a trip to all the Disney fantasy parks in the world. Since they had a family, he didn’t want to be away from them going to park after park. They negotiated a trip to one park for the whole family and loved their time in Paris and France. I’ve never seen the photo after the contest. Even the one print we had before the photo was bought by Disney has disappeared. But it was a wonderful photo. Hope it turns up again sometime. Somewhere. 

  • Anonymous

    I saw on Nat. Geo, I think, where there were these industrial sized python breeding spots, like barns, and during a hurricane the bins, which were in the thousands, the bins of the baby pythons were thrown all over Florida. The python breeding barns were a BUSINESS. Then mother nature took them and flung them all over. Isn’t this where the infestation of them began? Glad I live up north, no pythons, yet.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Denise-Camiolo/100000048932398 Denise Camiolo

    Hi Karen,

    Cal Garufo is my father.  He took that picture in his studio where I grew up in East Boston. 
    How nice of you to post this picture of your sister.  I guess we all didnt know at the time how “famous” this picture turned out to be.

    Thanks
    Denise Garufo

  • http://www.facebook.com/wood.timothy Wood Timothy

    Thank you, Paul Anka.

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