Famous B&W Photos Masterfully Brought To Life with Color

Famous B&W Photos Masterfully Brought To Life with Color

These photos completely alter my perspective on the past. A black and white photo, for me, evokes a completely different emotion than that of a colorized counterpart, especially if it's a photo I've seen in black and white for over twenty five years. In any case, this is the coolest thing I've seen in a long time. I seriously need to see a tutorial on this.

This is the third article we've put together of colorized photos from the past so make sure to check out the first and second articles as well. I'm always amazed at what a little bit of color adds to my perspective and view of the past. I just didn't think that it was possible to this level, but then again there are some very talented people out there. Here are a few more from various artists around the interwebs. Where are their tutorials on how to do this?


Baltimore Slums, 1938 (Colorized by Jordan J Lloyd) 

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Walt Whitman, 1887

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Mark Twain, circa 1900

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Charlie Chaplin, 1916

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Elizabeth Taylor, 1956

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Louisville, Kentucky, 1937 (Photo credit: Sanna Dullaway) 

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Thich Quang Duc’s self-immolation, 1963 (Photo credit: Sanna Dullaway) 

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Nicola Tesla

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Kissing the War Goodbye, 1945 (Photo credit: Sanna Dullaway)

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Big Jay McNeely, Olympic Auditorium, 1953

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London, 1945 (Photo credit: valdigtmycketfarg)

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Hindenburg Disaster, 1937

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Japanese Archers, circa 1860 (Colorized by Jordan J Lloyd)

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Unemployed Lumber Worker and His Wife, circa 1939

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British Troops Board Their Train for the Front, 1939

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Oscar II, King of Sweden and Norway, 1880 (Photo credit: Sanna Dullaway) 

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Old Gold Country store, 1939 (Colorized by Jordan J Lloyd) 

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Washington D. C., 1921 (Photo credit: Sanna Dullaway)

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Is there someone out there that has a tutorial on how to do this? I'd love to see the post process work for one of these images.

Via (Indulgd.com) Check out a link to their first article they made on this of 23 photos masterfully colorized.

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Criminal. Both artistically and legally.

The cover shot was Abraham Lincoln, now it's gone completely.. Probably because the same image was used as a cover before...? http://fstoppers.com/how-amazing-colorization-of-black-and-white-photos-...

Gregory L'Esperance's picture

So would de-saturating the early historical color photos be any worse??

I actually think that applying colour is somehow not right, despite the incredible skill of the retouchers. Assuming the colour selections are correct, the images seem to lose something with the addition of the colour. Perhaps just my taste.

Colour is as false as B&W. Black & white lets me see the form and composition; colour adds depth to those images, life, as if I've been there. It's just me.

I've seen tutorials on this process before, can't remember where. essentially, you create a bunch of little layers with blending mode of hue, and in each one carefully paint in some color with the brush tool (much easier if you have one layer per color that you add, then you can more easily tweak it with an adjustment layer later). it's easier if you have a second reference image with some skin tones and such that you can pick up with the eyedropper, but you can totally freehand it if you choose. but as for the artistic side of things, I dislike this. if color film were in the camera at the time the image was taken, then the artist probably would have taken a different picture, to utilize color as an artistic device. can't we just appreciate these great photos as great art, and realize that part of why they are so great is that they are black and white? many of these photos were taken after the advent of color film--clearly it's a conscious choice to take them in black and white. years from now, is someone going to colorize my black and white work (assuming any of it is any good)?

No credit for the original photographers?