Riotclitshave: The Blog That’s Worth a Billion Words

On May 1, 1947 Evelyn McHale leapt to her death from the observation deck of the Empire State Building. Photographer Robert Wiles took a photo of McHale a few minutes after her death.

I will never forget this image, which I discovered on the found-image photo blog riotclitshave. In fact, I’ve found many unforgettable images there. A little bit of everything: humor, horror, beauty, ugliness, joy and everything in between.  Sometimes, the blog curator, Bean Noneya, will go through phases. One week, she’ll be obsessed by the texture of old people’s skin. Another week, she’ll be taken by Islam. Preceded by: cute piglets! Another perennial RCS fixation is the interaction between people and animals. There is also a wealth of incredible black-and-white gems from bygone eras. If you’ve never seen this blog before, start looking. It’s a blog you can get lost in for hours; by the time you finally close the browser, the world will seem infinitely stranger.

When I told my roomate that I interviewed Bean for this blog, she didn’t seem that excited: “it’s just a popular photo blog where someone reposts images that they found elsewhere! It’s not like she takes them herself or anything.” But I’ve seen many photo blogs, and none impact me as strongly as RCS. In order to assort images so profoundly, one has to have a good eye, a sense of humor, a degree of subtlety and a unique perspective of the world. I’m constantly impressed by how the blog makes strong points simply by posting images in a certain order – a good example of that is the day she decided to post only images of female couples.

So who is the person behind riotclitshave? Why does she do this every week? Full interview after the jump.

Why “riotclitshave”?
It’s called riotclitshave as a play on “right click save” and the three words just felt rather lovely together.

Where do you find the images that you post?
I search for my images in a handful of ways. I watch a bunch of photo posting communities on livejournal, which include some Russian photodump blogs RSS’d into my LJ, I search terms on Google that I’m interested in and think will garner good pictures. I use the Flickr and LJ random image grabbers too. The Russian sites really give me some great stuff. It’s SO random and has so many pictures.

Have you ever posted an image that you later wish you hadn’t?
I have definitely posted pics that I wish I hadn’t. I don’t like posting photoshops- but I won’t usually delete them if I find they are. I get very annoyed with the comments whenever I post a skinny girl- people just can’t seem to help themselves. After the hundredth “sammich” comment I just want to delete the post. Which is why you’ll never see me post a picture specifically pointed at making fun of a fat person. People are cruel and I don’t want my journal to be a place for people to get hurt.

It always seems like you have just the right balance of ingredients: a little humor, a little tragedy, etc. How do you determine which pictures to post when? Does it have to do with your mood, or do you have a pre-defined list of what types of images you’re going to post on a certain day? Or is it all just random?
I post according to my mood. If you can feel the tone of the set you can probably divine my general mood. Though I do sometimes post to a theme so you’ll see all water pictures or portraits or such.

Do you consider yourself political and do you think you’re ever promoting a certain political agenda with the images you choose to show?
Am I political… I am, but I don’t deliberately put it into riotclitshave. I think my liberal personality does show with the pictures I choose. I have a few subjects I won’t post about though. I definitely don’t believe I’m promoting anything more than keeping an open mind to the various ways beauty presents itself in our world.

What are your other hobbies besides maintaining this photoblog? You’re not, by chance, a photographer yourself?
My hobbies, ha. Well, I do take pictures but I think I’ve posted maybe one – they have to pass my critical eye just like any other photograph does. But I do have a lot of other hobbies –  writing, gardening, reading, shooting guns, camping and really a host of other things I get into when I can.

Finally, why? Why run a free photoblog?
I have a lot of fun doing this, I love looking at pictures and I really enjoy sharing what I’ve found. I do think I’ve got a pretty good eye for interesting images, my mother is a pretty well known artist in Texas and she raised me to see the world with that eye. I’m happy that other people enjoy the images I find.

I’ll keep doing it as long as I’m still interested. The people who comment are fantastic- they amuse and educate me. They help find credits for the pictures, post more information for us to learn about the images and are very often hilarious. The comments for me really make it fun. My husband Bob and I are always laughing about something random that’s been posted.

I started a photoblog because I’ve been saving crazy/interesting pictures from the internet for years. Sometimes I’d show people who visited but it wasn a lot to digest all at once. So I started posting a few here and there in my personal blog. Not everyone who reads me shares my tastes and people asked me to put them under cuts, I didn’t want to – so I created another blog just for my pictures. I didn’t actually expect riotclitshave to ever reach outside of my friends list.

23 Responses to “Riotclitshave: The Blog That’s Worth a Billion Words”

  1. Jerem Morrow Says:

    I’ve been happily consuming riotclitshave’s posts for a handful o’ years now, and I have to say it’s damned nifty to see her blog pop up here.

  2. Alice Says:

    I’m really excited to look through riotclitshave, now! I’ve never heard of it before!

    Also…wow, I just can’t stop going back to that image of Evelyn McHale. The fact that she just looks like she’s sleeping after what was really a physically damaging death is haunting…at first it just struck me as an image of a model sitting on some sort of weird modern furniture.

  3. Jerem Morrow Says:

    Try #2…hehehe.

    p.s. Machines of Loving Grace used the McHale image as inspiration for their GILT album cover. Seen here:

  4. wrayb Says:

    I’ve been enjoying her blog for a year or more but didn’t see that photo. Amazing one, yes. Sleeping beauty. Sad loss. Beauty framed in destruction. etc.

  5. la mome neant Says:

    Another great find, thanks! I’ve added the journal.

  6. Angeliska Says:

    Hooray for Bean!
    She is a treasure- a silver sieve in the sea of images.
    The ones she finds can be so revelatory.
    Great to see this post-
    and many thanks and love in general
    for what y’all do here.
    Coilhouse is the big dipper
    in the milky way of oddments
    and wonders.

  7. Jovana Says:

    I disgust myself for loving this picture so much.
    It’s a sexy feeling.

  8. christiane Says:

    that image is haunting! i spent a good full five minutes looking at it before i read the caption, trying to figure out what she was lying on, she just looks like she’s sleeping

  9. Adam Rice Says:

    Bean’s an old friend and I’m tickled to see her interviewed here.

  10. Shaiyela Says:

    In terms of being highlighted by a publication, I don’t see the big deal about this blog. Like your roomie said – these aren’t her images, and her statements were provoked by the original photographer’s statement actually.

    However, I appreciate what she’s trying to do. The internet is fast, life is fast nowadays…we often forget what came before. Nice to have an archive and to share our moments together a little more freely.

  11. Angela Says:

    “her statements were provoked by the original photographer’s statement actually”

    Which photographer? There are thousands.

  12. Jerem Morrow Says:


    “her statements were provoked by the original photographer’s statement actually”

    Not to start an argument! Hahaha.

    But, isn’t that what everyone does? Myself being an artist, that’s exactly how I interpret my process. Taking in billions of points of information, and spitting them back out via my own filter.

  13. Shaiyela Says:

    @Angela – grammatical error.

    @Jerem Morrow – this is true, but it doesn’t really apply. She didn’t create the images and isn’t referencing it for any future work (that we know about). I’ll admit there is some creativity in the way she spits out the photographs…but, essentially, it’s still just an archive of recycled public stock. Anyone could do the same and many do. My issue is that I don’t find it particularly noteworthy for a magazine.

  14. lynnivere Says:

    Love it!!

  15. timoni Says:

    I think her photoblog is the best one I’ve ever seen, and one of my favorite sites on the internet. I’m always amazed that she’s not linked to more often–I have no idea where she gets her content, but it’s almost always stuff I haven’t seen anywhere else (which is rare in this day of Tumblrs and reblogs).

  16. Thawfrost Says:

    @Shaiyela: I get the feeling it was chosen not so much for being revolutionary (As noted, there’s no shortage of these things out there) insomuch as for its quality control.

    Looking through it for the last half hour, very few of the images seem to fall flat. That’s a pretty impressive feat for a collection of [i]photos[/i].

  17. Shaiyela Says:

    @Thawfrost – difference of opinion, that’s all. *shrugs*

  18. Shay Says:

    Wow, thanks for this! I’ve been interested in riotclitshave for a while now.

  19. Erica Stratton Says:

    @ Thawfrost: yeah, she’s a good “curator”, as Coilhouse has said. And we always need more of those. Though I was a surprised too that Coilhouse chose to cover it because usually their subjects are more… elaborate?

  20. whittles Says:

    Oh, yay. You guys posting about riotclitshave makes me super happy. I love both blogs and find them to be great respites from the internet’s flood that so often dilutes meaning.

    Thanks for alerting so many more folks to her curating.

  21. Ursula Wright Says:

    I’ve been a fan for years! rcs is WONDERFUL.. gives me and my family something to ponder over

  22. Michael Doyle Says:

    That’s probably my favorite photograph of all time.

  23. January Says:

    Wow- it was the Canadian Thanksgiving stat when I read this post, and absolutely dead at work- I spent easily two full hours on riot clit shave, and ::loved it::