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Thread: Colorized Historical Pictures

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    Colorized Historical Pictures

    There are many famous pictures over the last few centuries that were taken in grayscale. The more usual term is black-and-white, which is a misnomer, since such pictures include shades of gray. Some people have colorized them, painting colors on them to show some idea of what the originals looked like. So they are artist's conceptions to some degree, though making them often required a lot of research into what were the likely colors in the pictures.

    Some of the images here are repeated in several of the pages, and I've included all these pages because it was hard for me to decide which to select. I've even found some different colorizations of the same picture, like Marina Amaral and the Dynamichrome team doing different colorizations of the famous D-Day landing picture.

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    Elder Contributor barbos's Avatar
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    Pictures of pre-revolution Russia are not colorized, they are actually color pictures.
    Take that, You!

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    What Would History's Rulers Look Like as Modern People? | Big Edition
    What would it be like to pass an Egyptian Pharaoh from thousands of years ago on the sidewalk today if he was on his way to a business meeting downtown?

    Artist Becca Saladin has an answer for you. He looks pretty much like the guy who just got on the bus behind you.

    A Texas-based graphic designer, Saladin offers a modern take on dozens of history’s most powerful people in her portrait series, “Royalty Now.”

    The following portraits imagine some of history's royalty in modern guise. Can you still spot their power?
    The first page shows her reconstruction of the famous Cleopatra. She also has Julius Caesar, King Henry VII, Alexander Hamilton, and several others.

    You can also find her artwork on Royalty Now (@royalty_now_) • Instagram photos and videos

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    A related sort of reconstruction is restoring the paint on ancient statues. Surprising as it may seem at present, they were painted, but the paint has washed off of most of them long ago.


    In early modern times, many people came to believe that the stripped state of many statues was the original state of these statues.
    Quote Originally Posted by Smithsonian
    No longer; German archaeologist Vinzenz Brinkmann is on a mission. Armed with high-intensity lamps, ultraviolet light, cameras, plaster casts and jars of costly powdered minerals, he has spent the past quarter century trying to revive the peacock glory that was Greece. He has dramatized his scholarly findings by creating full-scale plaster or marble copies hand-painted in the same mineral and organic pigments used by the ancients: green from malachite, blue from azurite, yellow and ocher from arsenic compounds, red from cinnabar, black from burned bone and vine.
    He paints imitations of the originals, and he has displayed his painted imitations alongside the originals.
    Quote Originally Posted by CNN
    Looking for "paint ghosts"

    The research of Vinzenz Brinkmann, an archeologist and professor at Frankfurt's Goethe University, coalesced in the original "Gods in Color" show at Munich's Glyptothek museum in 2003.

    To create reproductions, Brinkmann starts by simply looking at the surface of the sculptures with a naked eye, before adding various visual aids in the form of ultraviolet of infrared lamps. The light source must come from a very low angle, nearly parallel to the surface being analyzed. That simple trick brings out details otherwise impossible to see.

    Because paint acts as a coating and wears off unevenly, bits of surface that were covered in paint will stand out as they were protected from erosion.

    "That can show a variety of different paints that are there or are gone, but have left a paint ghost," Dreyfus said.

    This "paint ghost" can help researchers deduce the original paint patterns on the statue. It can also help in understanding what types of pigments might have been used, as more resistant ones would have lasted longer than weak ones.

    "We can also grind minuscule amounts of the original pigment, where present, and determine what its color was," Dreyfus said.

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