Saturday, January 3, 2015

Colourised Historic Photographs, Part 1

Colourising of films has its supporters and detractors. Film critics Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert have referred to it as "Hollywood's New Vandalism” and indeed it would be hard to imagine classic B & W films such as Casablanca in a colourised format.

When it comes to historic photos the process is even more polarising. Should famous historic photos be altered? There is a certain feeling of history associated with B & W but it is an abstraction; colour gives a sense of immediacy and modernity that also makes the photos worth a second look.

Here are some examples from

Your views?

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Punishment for collaboration with the Nazis, Montelimar 1944

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Lonely kid with a stuffed animal, London 1945
He had come back from playing and found his house a shambles—his mother, father and brother dead under the rubble…he was looking up at the sky, his face an expression of both confusion and defiance. The defiance made him look like a young Winston Churchill. This photograph was used by IBM to publicize a show in London. The boy grew up to become a truck driver after the war, and walking past the IBM offices, he recognised his picture.

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Times Square, 1947

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Albert Einstein, 1921

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Hindenburg disaster, 6 May 1937

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View from Capitol in Nashville, Tennessee during the Civil War, 1864

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Marilyn Monroe, 1957

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Easter eggs for Hitler, circa 1944-1945

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Helen Keller meeting Charlie Chaplin, 1919

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Construction of the Golden Gate Bridge, 1935

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Broadway, Grand Union Hotel, Saratoga Springs, New York, circa 1900-1915


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