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Russia in color, a century ago
boston globe ^ | August 20, 2010 | Alan tayor

Posted on 08/25/2010 8:41:12 PM PDT by Charlespg

With images from southern and central Russia in the news lately due to extensive wildfires, I thought it would be interesting to look back in time with this extraordinary collection of color photographs taken between 1909 and 1912. In those years, photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863-1944) undertook a photographic survey of the Russian Empire with the support of Tsar Nicholas II

(Excerpt) Read more at boston.com ...


TOPICS: Arts/Photography; History; Travel
KEYWORDS: ggg; photography; russia; tsar
amazing photos
1 posted on 08/25/2010 8:41:17 PM PDT by Charlespg
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To: Charlespg

I agree, great photos.

But, why does everyone look so happy?


2 posted on 08/25/2010 8:46:27 PM PDT by Cyber Ninja (Live and Let Live; is not working...)
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To: Charlespg

More photos coming 8/27.


3 posted on 08/25/2010 8:49:33 PM PDT by cornelis
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To: Charlespg

Hard to imagine the hell they are going to go through in the next 40 years...


4 posted on 08/25/2010 8:50:07 PM PDT by 2banana (My common ground with terrorists - they want to die for islam and we want to kill them)
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To: Charlespg

Absolutely fascinating...Thanks for posting!


5 posted on 08/25/2010 8:50:31 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Charlespg

More here.
http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/empire/


6 posted on 08/25/2010 8:52:24 PM PDT by mnehring
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To: OnTheDress
But, why does everyone look so happy?

My understanding is that early cameras needed to keep the shutters open for a while. Using color filters possibly made it worse. It is hard to hold a smile perfectly still for a couple of minutes.
7 posted on 08/25/2010 8:55:00 PM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics)
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To: Charlespg

Ah, those were the good old days except for the Pogroms. My family left before the Pogroms really got underway, and the only photos I have of them are in the brown sepia tones.

These photos are fantastic and show a way of life that still exists in some of the further recesses of the old Czar and Soviet Empires.

I see that burquas haven’t change and that women still suffer under them.


8 posted on 08/25/2010 8:55:19 PM PDT by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
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To: cornelis

Huh. I thought I had the whole collection, and while I have a lot of pictures that aren’t shown here, a good chunk of those they’re showing I don’t have. I guess they’ve colorized more of the archive since I downloaded it from the LOC.

It’s a lot easier to convert the images to color today than it used to be, thanks to computers. ;)


9 posted on 08/25/2010 8:56:33 PM PDT by OldGuard1
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To: Charlespg

Nice!


10 posted on 08/25/2010 8:56:39 PM PDT by SIDENET ("If that's your best, your best won't do." -Dee Snider)
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To: MadMax, the Grinning Reaper

Taking a trip on the Trans-Siberia Railway is on my Bucket List.


11 posted on 08/25/2010 8:58:53 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: Charlespg

(Sophisticated English voice) Absolutely stunning, very exquisite!


12 posted on 08/25/2010 9:01:32 PM PDT by Extremely Extreme Extremist (Mexico is the U.S. version of Hamas)
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To: Dr. Sivana

The second photo, next to the creek, gives a good indication of the long shutter speed based on the look of the water.

But damn amazing photos for being a century old.


13 posted on 08/25/2010 9:11:32 PM PDT by AFreeBird
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To: Charlespg

This one in particular caught my imagination - this young man would not have remembered the 1905 revolution but he would have been in his late teens during the Bolshevik one if he hadn't been snapped up for the Russian army in the meantime. He would have seen the starvation in the 30's, the Terror, and would have been a middle-aged man when the Germans came over the border in 1941. He'd have gone, of course, plucked from the Urals to the front, and if he survived he'd have seen Sputnik and in the 70's when the U.S. left Vietnam, a Soviet Union triumphant as it hadn't been since 1945. He'd have seen the decay of the 80's and if he were lucky the fall of the world he knew in 1991.

That's really quite a lifetime if in fact he were spared to live it. The odds aren't very good given what happened to his people, but if he did, what a life.

14 posted on 08/25/2010 9:19:00 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: Charlespg
The quality of these photos are amazing, its too bad others didn't use this technique to take more color pictures long ago.
15 posted on 08/25/2010 9:19:21 PM PDT by Husker24
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To: OldGuard1

Those aren’t color converted photos. They’re the real deal. Color photography was being experimented with in the mid 19th century. Made it out of the lab and into the hands of photographers (who could afford it) around the turn of the 20th.


16 posted on 08/25/2010 9:19:56 PM PDT by AFreeBird
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To: AFreeBird

They are amazing and beautiful pictures.


17 posted on 08/25/2010 9:21:17 PM PDT by thecodont
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To: Charlespg

Wow, these are great!


18 posted on 08/25/2010 9:28:40 PM PDT by Yardstick
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To: Charlespg; Impy; Clemenza; Crichton; Victoria Delsoul; BillyBoy; cva66snipe; Clintonfatigued; ...

Remarkable. The colors look as though the pictures are of recent vintage.


19 posted on 08/25/2010 9:32:04 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (~"This is what happens when you find a stranger in the Amber Lamps !"~~)
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To: mnehring

Interesting group of pics. Thanks!


20 posted on 08/25/2010 9:43:09 PM PDT by paudio (She wanted to be known as another Jackie O. Instead, people see her another Marie Antoinette)
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To: fieldmarshaldj
Wow, great pics.

It was a special process with red, green, and blue filters and recombining them to make color. Very interesting.

And they look awesome.

21 posted on 08/25/2010 9:44:56 PM PDT by Victoria Delsoul
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To: OnTheDress; Dr. Sivana
But, why does everyone look so happy?

Good question.

At first I suspected it was because in 1910 folks from that culture may not have been that comfortable around cameras, if they even knew what a camera was.

But Doc nailed it. From the comments:

Incidentally, very few people are smiling in old photographs because the exposure times might be from 15 seconds to several minutes, depending on the emulsion in use, light, and lens. Hard enough to hold still, much less to maintain a smile!

The lack of smile is due to the technic used by the potographer: he had to expose 3 different plates to get a color shot so the subject was exposed for a long period of time and should remain still so smiling was almost impossible. You can see in the picture involving a river that the exposure was quite long enough to give that smooth effect to the water.

22 posted on 08/25/2010 9:45:52 PM PDT by frog in a pot (Wake up America! You are losing the war against your families and your Constitution!)
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To: fieldmarshaldj

Yea I can see a few of them. But dial up isn’t friendly for a 30 picture download. I can see about 10 of them. Amazing.


23 posted on 08/25/2010 10:38:36 PM PDT by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: Charlespg

Those are incredible! Thanks for posting. It’s like seeing a world I’ve never seen.


24 posted on 08/25/2010 11:19:40 PM PDT by I still care (I believe in the universality of freedom -George Bush, asked if he regrets going to war.)
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To: Charlespg

Yes, amazing pictures. Thank you for posting.


25 posted on 08/25/2010 11:25:04 PM PDT by radiohead (Buy ammo, get your kids out of government schools, pray for the Republic.)
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To: Charlespg

I didn’t realize that color photos that good were being made in the early 1900s.


26 posted on 08/25/2010 11:26:08 PM PDT by Shery (in APO Land)
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To: Charlespg

Beautiful, but heartrending to think how soon it was all about to be turned upside down.

If only that horrible war had been avoided. . .


27 posted on 08/25/2010 11:34:15 PM PDT by Burma Jones
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To: radiohead

I thought it interesting that the fat guy in the blue satin tunic, the Emir of Bukhara. His daughter ended up working for the Voice of America per Wikipedia.


28 posted on 08/25/2010 11:57:53 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I love BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: Charlespg

Those are of just outstanding picture quality!


29 posted on 08/26/2010 12:12:08 AM PDT by SuziQ
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To: Billthedrill
That's really quite a lifetime if in fact he were spared to live it. The odds aren't very good given what happened to his people, but if he did, what a life.

Beautifully spoken. It was mesmerizing to read while examining the photo. Thanks.

30 posted on 08/26/2010 12:27:21 AM PDT by Talisker (When you find a turtle on top of a fence post, you can be damn sure it didn't get there on it's own.)
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To: IncPen

ping


31 posted on 08/26/2010 12:40:45 AM PDT by Nailbiter
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To: Charlespg

Yes.

Amazing!


32 posted on 08/26/2010 2:47:00 AM PDT by FormerACLUmember (Character is defined by how we treat those who society says have no value.)
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To: Billthedrill

Post #14: Well reasoned contemplation. Thanks.


33 posted on 08/26/2010 2:48:58 AM PDT by FormerACLUmember (Character is defined by how we treat those who society says have no value.)
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To: Charlespg

34 posted on 08/26/2010 3:23:32 AM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Visualize)
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To: fieldmarshaldj

Wow I didn’t know they could take color pictures back then.

I wonder why more pictures such as that weren’t taken. The process was too expensive maybe?


35 posted on 08/26/2010 7:09:52 AM PDT by Impy (DROP. OUT. MARK. KIRK.)
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To: AFreeBird

No, they weren’t. They were three separate black and white photos with color filters over them.


36 posted on 08/26/2010 12:46:45 PM PDT by OldGuard1
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To: Impy

They couldn’t. What they did was put three color filters over the lens for each of three subsequent black-and-white shots, which the library of congress later recombined digitally back into color. Because things move in-between shots, you see unusual color artifacts on smoke, water, etc.


37 posted on 08/26/2010 12:57:47 PM PDT by OldGuard1
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To: Billthedrill

There are some YouTube videos of Jews in Warsaw in 1939 months before the start of the war, that are in color, you watch them and realize these people had no idea what was about to happen to them in just a few months.


38 posted on 08/26/2010 1:03:25 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: dfwgator

I’ve seen that video...it’s haunting to me to see their faces...not knowing what horrors awaited them..


39 posted on 08/27/2010 3:50:59 PM PDT by pallmallman (Q)
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To: Burma Jones

At least some parts of the U.S.S.R. were just out of the reach of the Nazis..though many from those areas were conscripted and volunteered for miltary service...but at least some were spared from the grip of the Nazis because they lived just far away enough, like the eastern Caucasus and further east.


40 posted on 08/27/2010 4:02:20 PM PDT by pallmallman (Q)
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To: pallmallman

I was referring to the 1914 War. If that one had been avoided, no Lenin/Stalin, no Hitler, probably no Great Depression, no Wilsonian template for FDR’s mass expansion of the fed gov, etc., etc.


41 posted on 08/28/2010 1:36:13 PM PDT by Burma Jones
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