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Russia: Incredible Color Pictures From A Century Ago

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posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:24 AM
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That castle looks like something out of Candyland




posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:36 AM
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The Bayer filter commonly used in digital cameras is based roughly on same principle.

So the technology spiral made a complete turn...



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:37 AM
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I ask myself why it is that I never realized color photography existed before the 1960s. Why are all the photos and things I ever saw from before I was born nearly always in black and white? Here we see some photographer exactly 100 years ago traipsing across rural Russia and the extended steppes and mountains of its empire pre-Bolshevik revolution. It's amazing to see the color of the different people who called these places home. The Jewish teacher with students, the Emirs, the nomads; the white, yellow and mixed peoples...it's insanity that most people don't even have a blip in their minds about this place called Central Asia and the intricacies of it.

Why are we not using these old photographs to teach history and make it more accessible to modern students. We're talking peoples and histories that directly and indirectly mesh and influence the history of the Middle East and Afghanistan. How useful would this be from an anthropological perspective and why is it not more common to stumble upon?

EDIT: I finally realized how to star and flag yesterday, so now I made this officially my first "S&F" as it's called.

[edit on 23-8-2010 by Sphota]



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:50 AM
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This reminds me of Albert Kahn's autochrome pictures although I think that was a different method.

Early 1900s in Colour

Albert Kahn Museum

Albert Kahn Bio

BBC series

Albert Kahn Wiki

Article about the museum

I was about 12 years old when I visited the French WW2 museum and they had a screen showing pictures of D-Day in color. I'll never forget that day. It was the day I realised that history really means something tangible, that these things really did happen, in color, to real persons.

Reading your thread has brought me back to that feeling. Star and Flag for that. You've just brought an end to a long summer in which I asked myself why I ever go a degree in history in the first place! Thanks for that.

Isn't it stunning? Those were real people, people like me and you. 100 years gone. Everything and nothing at all changed.



[edit on 23-8-2010 by NichirasuKenshin]



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:59 AM
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It's hard to believe these were actually taken one hundred years ago. The color, quality, and resolution of these photos suggests they were taken much more recent.

I'm not challenging their validity as I have no evidence to back up such a claim, nor am I claiming to be a photography expert, but just taking a look at the larger photos on the link provided makes me believe they are more recent photographs.

Nonetheless, they are incredible pictures, especially if they were taken at the time they claim to have been taken.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:05 AM
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Originally posted by NovusOrdoMundi
It's hard to believe these were actually taken one hundred years ago. The color, quality, and resolution of these photos suggests they were taken much more recent.

I'm not challenging their validity as I have no evidence to back up such a claim, nor am I claiming to be a photography expert, but just taking a look at the larger photos on the link provided makes me believe they are more recent photographs.

Nonetheless, they are incredible pictures, especially if they were taken at the time they claim to have been taken.


Photographic plates fell out of use completely - only relatively recently. Because of the HUGE surface area and analogue resolution, that stuff is really hard to beat. There were a few common formats but any of them was HUMONGOUS compared to the later 35mm film and to all digital sensors thereafter.

Really doesn't surprise me that the pics came out OK. I had a plate camera once and it was a work of art.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:10 AM
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reply to post by buddhasystem
 


I trust your analysis of it. It seems you know more about it than I do. It's just hard to believe, that's all. The color and quality looks like something I would expect in a photo taken in the 1980's. It's incredible that the same technology existed 70 years prior.


jra

posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:19 AM
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Here's a site I forgot about, but this thread reminded me of. It's worldwaronecolorphotos.com. These were taken with colour film and not done in the same method as the ones shown in the OP. So the colour isn't as vivid, but they're still neat I think.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:31 AM
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reply to post by NichirasuKenshin
 


Thanks for the nice reply, and I'm glad it made an impact on you


And I agree, you feel a sense of connectedness when you're watching pictures from this era in colors, in contrast to the usual black\white photos.

[edit on 23/8/10 by Droogie]



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:43 AM
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Absolutely perfect , thank you for posting this and also to others regarding the tech.

I did recall some chap at art college using plates, textures and depth of his work was amazing.

marking this thread for ongoing research.

The self portrait is very evocative.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:45 AM
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What a fantastic post...

A glimpse of the world as it was before the last 100 years actually happened...phenomenal...



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 11:54 AM
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Truly amazing! If you look close at the city shots, you'll see no garbage strewn about. I thought they were being clean until I saw the water carrier; they didn't have anything to throw away. Every thing was used.
Something else, everyone in those pictures is dead, a little morbid but something that I find fascinating.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 12:27 PM
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This is the Mother Russia from literature. Thanx for sharing the site.

It would be interesting to see some of these same sites photographed today to witness changes.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by hinky
It would be interesting to see some of these same sites photographed today to witness changes.


That might very well be possible in that most, if not all, of the locations are named with each photograph. I haven't got time to do anything like that at the moment though.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 12:33 PM
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I have always wondered what my life would have been like if I were born in a different century. Hard to believe that not too long ago those people were not even traveling via vehicle or plane whilst getting directions via navigation app through an Ipad. Crazy times they lived in hehe. Just imagine 100 years from now!



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 01:02 PM
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Nice thread, as it's always interesting to these photos, however these have already been posted, I believe and can be found here: Early 1900s in Colour.

Anyway, I'll again S&F, as these photos are spectacular.

--airspoon

[edit on 23-8-2010 by airspoon]



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 01:09 PM
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reply to post by airspoon
 


Thanks for bringing that to the attention of the viewers of this thread, it's really appreciated! But I can't find any of the pictures in your link in the OP, so I guess they're new to these forums. But thanks for digging that nice thread up for us



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 01:26 PM
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Originally posted by buddhasystem
The Bayer filter commonly used in digital cameras is based roughly on same principle.

So the technology spiral made a complete turn...


Right --

Many people don't seem to realize that the "image sensor" (CCD or CMOS) of ALL digital cameras (NASA's and the one you own) are essentially color blind -- that is consumer digital cameras can only "really" see light in shades of gray.

It's takes filters such as the bayer filter found in most consumer digital cameras to create the different shades of gray, plus a computer to "make an educated guess" at what color is being represented by those shades of gray.

As pointed out earlier, the photographer in the OP used a similar method -- he used black-and-white film and filters to create the shades of gray, and used projection through color transparencies to recreate the color represented by the shade of gray.

It's a clever method of getting approximate color from black-and-white film -- or in the case of digital photography, getting color from a black-and-white image sensor.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 02:42 PM
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Wow.
The colors are so soft and subtle yet extremely natural and vibrant.

Truly amazing.



posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 03:19 PM
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As wonderful as these pictures are, I believe they could be made even better. A person with access to the original color-separated bw images could apply modern digital techniques to compensate for movement of individual persons, as well as image distortion near the edges. The artists' original intention was photographic perfection, so helping them achieve it posthumously should offend no one.






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