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100 Year Old Rgb Photos


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#1 Nica

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 07:54 AM

I was reading From Ideabook.com: Chuck Green's Design Briefing, Issue 132. In it was the following article:

A lesson about how we perceive photographic imagery

In the early 1900s, Russian chemist and photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii conducted a photographic survey of the Russian Empire. Between 1909 and 1915 he captured images from eleven regions of, what is otherwise, a thinly documented area of the world. What makes the images so unique is that he photographed them using an elaborate system that allowed him to reproduce the final images in color.

What I find instructive is how eerie they seem. Though they were taken 100 years ago, these vivid, high resolution photographs of people and places look as if they were taken on a movie set last week. Eerie, perhaps, because I'm just not used to seeing images from this long ago in natural color and my brain has a hard time finding them believable.

It's somewhat analogous to how the filtering effects applied to Instagram images inflence our perception of photographs folks are taking today. In that case, the effects remove the images from reality. (In case you're interested, here's a look at some new filters Facebook plans to offer now that they have acquired Instagram.) the link was missing here

Thanks to Russel Lacy for pointing us to it.

Example 1... Here

Example 2... Here

Example 3... Here

The complete gallery via the Library of Congress... Here


There are several venues that have edited and compiled some of the more interesting images in various forms. This is one of those compilations... Here

How it was done... Here


I was absolutely amazed that 100 years ago someone was already thinking in terms of RGB color and adjusting filters.

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#2 Cheri T

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 08:59 AM

That is pretty cool! He was way ahead of his time, that's for sure. TFS!

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#3 Becster

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 09:00 AM

Monica. that's amazing! Thank you so much for sharing!

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#4 AggieB

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 09:44 AM

Monica, you are right, that is just amazing! The castle in the first link is especially awesome, thanks for sharing this!

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#5 April Showers

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 10:15 AM

That is so cool! Thanks for sharing it Monica.

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#6 elibar

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 10:27 AM

Oh, wow - I spent some time looking those. (I have a habit of getting lost in libraries anyway) Thanks for sharing!

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