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what kind of photograph? Milk Glass and Oil?

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  • what kind of photograph? Milk Glass and Oil?

    Ok First let me say hey to everyone.
    I have been searching for months on a photograph that I aquired by accident. Or at least I think its a photograph. Its an image/portrait on what I think is milk glass. Then it is painted/colored with Oil paints.

    I found many interesting things on old photography using clear glass plates but it no where near what I have, because of the white glass. The portrait is sign Trinity Court Studios, which I now know was around in the late 1800's early 1900's. They took many of the images of important political people and places of the times. Based in Pittsburgh, PA.

    My question is this. What is it? Is it a photograph or is a painting or both?

    I got this portrait unknowingly. I asked for a frame with an old photo of my grandparents. My mother gave it to me on the condition that I would restore and make copies of the photograph. I took it home and when I finally figured out how to open the frame I found this under the photo. Its an incredable piece, although I have no idea of who or what it is. Or even how to take care of it. So Im posting links to some pictures of it and maybe one of you can tell me what it is and about the time frame it was made.
    link to portrait

    Photograph and frame

    close up

  • #2

    welcome to RP.

    you're right, it's an interesting piece. i'd post this in the history forum on retouch. you may get more responses and attract those that know this stuff better than i.

    to my eye it appears to be a photo that's been colorized. the woman looks to be colorized not in oil, but the background certainly is.

    as to how to take care of it, i'd say if you have a VERY fine, silky type lens brush, brush it very lightly with that. and, i'd get a uv glass covering put on it to protect it from the light. you may also want to do something about humidity/moisture/mildew. and on that, i'm not quite sure.

    i'd also have the whole appraised. it may be of some value besides sentimental.

    i cant see the glass it's painted/photographed on, so cant really comment on that.

    also, your last link you posted gives a login page, so couldnt see anything there.

    if i remember correctly, when you photographed on photographic glass plates, the image was a reverse image or negative, but i also seem to recall that some of those might have also been reverse negatives (positives). but not sure of that either. do check the history forum. the folks that love this stuff will probably be able to help you better than i.



    • #3

      Thank you, I'll do that. The back shows a plain piece of white glass which im only assuming is Milk glass. I getting ready to sent some detailed photographs to Sotheby auction house and see what they think too.


      • #4
        you're welcome.

        and i'd be interested in what sotheby's says.



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