There are more and more momentary celebrities today than ever before, and too many opportunities to become one. There are also uncounted numbers of past celebrities whose once ubiquitous names are unknown to most of us, unless linked through Google. The powerful search engine not only let’s us find (and possibly harass) long lost intimates, but to resurrect the great and near great who have fallen through the cracks of time and notoriety. One such is Bird Millman.
One of the most renown high-wire acts in the Barnum and Bailey and Ringling Bros Barnum and Bailey Circuses, Bird Millman O’Day (born Jennadean Engleman in1890) was also briefly a film actress. But her major stardom was the result of her feats of balance high above the streets of New York. She was acclaimed for her unusual speed and seemingly effortless grace — and her parasol, which she used for balance.
There is something satisfying about finding a venerable celebrity who everybody knew and nobody knows today. Enjoy the knowledge . . .
Designer Resource: Shadow Type
For even more vintage find by Steven Heller, pick up a copy of Shadow Type: Classic Three-Dimensional Lettering, co-authored with Louise Fili. This beautiful book includes more than 300 historical examples of typography that will inspire you and delight your eyes.