Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Restoring an 1870's tintype
A tintype was "a photograph made by creating a direct positive on a sheet of iron metal that is blackened by painting, lacquering or enamelling and is used as a support for a collodion photographic emulsion." They were popular in the second half of the 19th century before being replaced by film and plate cameras.
Top Dog Imaging has a fascinating series of pictures showing how a tintype dating from the 1870's was restored by digitizing it, then using photo editing software. Here's a reduced-size before-and-after comparison.
Go read the article to see intermediate images, and learn the details of how so remarkable a result was achieved. Very interesting reading for everyone who enjoys photography.
Whenever I see old pictures like this, I can't help but wonder who the person was, what they did to earn their living, where and how they lived, whether their descendants were still alive today . . . pointless speculation, I know, but nevertheless interesting to me. Who was she? What did she do with her life?