What a great atmospheric photo. Was Frontenac a soda or a beer? This photo could have been taken just before Prohibition . . .
The graphics used in advertising during the late 19th and early 20th century epitomize American art at its finest. Most of the early illustrators were truly the unsung heroes of the art world. As a retired product/brand designer, I occasionally teach marketing seminars for fun. I always bring in advertising pieces from this era from my collection. The students, mostly 20 and 30 somethings, are amazed at the quality of artwork that was created over a century before the advent of computer aided graphics. This billboard "collection" is amazing. I'll take a six pack of Frontenac, a bag of Old Chum, two scoops of icecream, and, of course, some magic baking powder!!!
Definitely a Canadian Runabout. Looks to be a 1919.
The cowl lights look to be accessory electrics.
I'm trying to imagine the billboards in color after seeing the Frontenac ad.
"The graphics used in advertising during the late 19th and early 20th century epitomize American art at its finest. Most of the early illustrators were truly the unsung heroes of the art world."
I sure agree with you on this. Illustration was replaced by photography increasingly in the 50s & 60s and the quality has been descending ever since.
So much of the new graphics seems like an explosion of color & shape with no organizing theme. Energy, certainly but no form or animating spirit to my eyes. I have seem TV commercial where I wasn't even able to tell WHAT was being advertised much less see any reason why I should buy whatever product paid for the "message."
No problem understanding the product in these old billboards!