Tuesday, April 8, 2014

faux autochromes at the Jazz Age Sunday Social

So if you follow my blog, you might already know that in addition to making costumes, one of my other quirky hobbies is creating faux-antique photos.   Although I love all varieties of early photography, the antique photos that I adore most of all are autochromes, like this 1910s photo seen on the right from the George Eastman House collection.  This process was invented by the Lumière brothers in France, and it was used to produce the world's first commercially successful color photographs.  Most autochromes date from around 1905 through the early 1930s, and you can see more examples on my pinterest page devoted to the subject.  There is something so hauntingly beautiful about old autochromes with their hazy colors, soft focus, and pointillist-style coloring.  Their subjects exude such quietness and serenity, and I adore the dreamy, other-worthy feeling that you get from seeing 100 year old subjects in full realistic color.  
So after our recent DFWCG outing at the Jazz Age Sunday Social, I decided to try my hand at creating my own faux-autochromes.  The 20's era costumes, old cars, and historical buildings from that event made the perfect subject matter for this type of photography.  I used photoshop to make these, and I developed with my own custom techniques and actions to create an autochrome effect.  I also spent a good bit of time de-modernizing the backgrounds, as you can see in this "before and after" comparison.  It's a lot of work, but SO much fun to use my 21st c. computer skills to create images that play homage to this fascinating photo process from the past.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Chemise gown research LUV!

Back in the Dark Ages of the internet, one of the costumers who inspired me and taught me more than any other was Sarah Lorraine of the Mode Historique website, and once again she is knocking my socks off with her newest research.  She is an AMAZING costumer and historian, and she has been specifically studying the Chemise à la Reine for the past few years for her graduate thesis in art history.  Sarah has generously decided to share some of her breakthrough findings with us by creating a Chemise à la Reine month, with 30 days of fabulous posts about this revolutionary article of clothing!  

And to conclude her research, Sarah is hoping to return to England to study the only extant 1780-1785 chemise gown, off the mannequin and outside of the display case, but she needs our help to get there.   She has created an Indegogo campaign to help pay for her travel expenses, and if you have a little that you could pitch in, it would be a wonderful way to thank Sarah for sharing her discoveries with us all.  I can't wait to read and learn more about this fascinating type of dress throughout April, and I'm even more excited to see what additional knowledge Sarah can discover if she is able to fully study a surviving chemise gown in person.  I think this is such an exciting project, and I hope you all will consider helping her out on this journey!