The Incredible Century Old Color Photography of Prokudin-Gorsky

One hundred years ago this year, Russian photographer Sergey Produkin-Gorsky (pictured left) embarked on a project that was to define his life's work - to photograph the vast country of Russia and its peoples in full color.  Yes, that's right color.  Before the first commercial air freight flight, before the invention and testing of the tank and even before the sinking of the Titanic, Prokudin-Gorsky created an unrivalled and astonishing color record of his native country.

The process used involved a camera that would take a set of three photographs. These pictures would be monochrome but each picture would be taken using a filter of a different color. When all three monochrome pictures were projected (using light which had to be specifically colored) then the original color scene could be reconstructed.


From the Upcoming ueue, submitted by taliesyn30.

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I love the coat that the Emir of Bukhara is wearing in one of the pictures. I think the perception of the past being in black and white or faded colors isn't just because of black and white photography, but also because old paintings, color photos, and artifacts have faded with time. What you see in museums had been degraded by sunlight and time, and I think that really affects what we imagine the past to have looked like.
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Here's another guy - interesting in his own right. He lived next door to my maternal Grandmother in Waddington NY. When he died, his widow gave my Mother's family a lot of memoribilia including boxes of the 3-D photos and a "magic lantern" to view them. As a kid we looked at a lot of those slides in our kitchen projected on the refrigerator. I have a hand carved table from India which was given to me through my late Mother. My sister has an artifact from the Empress of China's palace. The 3-D photos were given by my Mother to a museum in New Jersey.

here is a link:
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