Technology Tuesday: Before iPhone, Paul Sokal

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It’s TECHNOLOGY Tuesday for our #STEAMWeek and we are featuring some analog wonders that changed the world – now all completely contained in smartphones! Watch at the end for your own DIY analog activity!

Award-winning photographer and physician, Dr. Paul Sokal MD, explores the rapid pace of technological change through large format color photographs of the relics of once-revolutionary products now replaced by cell phones. According to Sokal,

“As our world becomes increasingly complex and technology dependent, I am often drawn back to my mid-century childhood when the world at least seemed simpler. The small, everyday artifacts of that time have become talismans, able to conjure up memories like capturing images on film and later discovering the outcome in the darkroom.”

In this series, Sokal transforms early technological into icons of a bygone era by creating larger than life digital images of telephones, slide-rules, alarm clocks and other obsolete everyday objects.

PAUL SOKAL, Phone Before iPhone, 2017, digital print, 35 x 45 in., Collection of The Grace Museum, Gift of the Artist.

PAUL SOKAL, Camera Before iPhone, 2017, digital print, 31.5 x 45 in., Collection of The Grace Museum, Gift of the Artist.



STEP 1: Trace circle end of cardboard tube on one side of both cups with permanent marker.

STEP 2: Cut out circles.

STEP 3: Insert one end of the cardboard tube into the cut circles on the cups.

STEP 4: Trace bottom edge of phone or device onto cardboard tube, centering halfway between cups.

STEP 5: Cut out phone tracing lines.

STEP 6: Decorate and play music!


  • 2- plastic cups

  • 1 – cardboard tube

  • pencil

  • permanent marker

  • exacto knife or scissors