Comprising a website, a traveling exhibition, and book, Qantara is a very rich and interesting resource for studying the cultural heritage of the Mediterranean from Late Antiquity to the 18th century. The website contains over 1500 entries from Western Europe, Byzantium, and Islamic regions that include objects, sites, and monuments. The material can be searched using various intersections such as materials, subjects, or historical period. Each entry has descriptive metadata (size, media, discovery and repository information), a short descriptive essay, and a bibliography.
There are repositories and cultural heritage institutions from nine countries involved in Qantara, and the information has been reviewed by over 200 experts including curators, historians, and researchers.
The Visual Resources Center recently added a beautiful group of French medieval cathedrals to the publicly available Lantern Slide Collection. These images are some of the finest examples of large format architectural photography in the collection. We continue to add images to the Luna collection on a regular basis, so check back in to see what’s new!
The VRC is excited to announce its new publicly available LUNA collection, Images of Black Chicago: The Robert Sengstacke Photography Archive. Born in Chicago on May 29, 1943, Robert “Bobby” Sengstacke is one of the city’s most prolific documentary photographers who is best known for capturing the African American experience. Having grown up in the newspaper business (he is the grand-nephew of Robert Sengstacke Abbott, founder of the Chicago Defender), Sengstacke was able to learn from established African American photographers at a young age and had unique access to important events and people. With the help of Art History Professor Rebecca Zorach, the VRC has scanned over 3,000 negatives featuring the artistic community and street life of Chicago’s South Side in the late 1960’s. To obtain high resolution images and permission contact Robert A. Sengstacke (firstname.lastname@example.org or 773-744-7487).
The Museum of Modern Art recently launched Object:Photo, an amazing website focused on the Thomas Walther Collection. Composed of 341 photographs, the Walther Collection entered the museum in 2001. In 2010, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation gave the museum a substantial grant to research and preserve the photographs. The website is a direct result of this four-year research project. In the words of Glenn D. Lowry, the Museum of Modern Art’s director, the website “is unprecedented in its functionality, providing virtual access to the objects in exceptional depth, along with wide-ranging scholarship on the photographs’ historical context and significance.”
In addition to scans of the photographs themselves, there are scholarly essays, a section on the scientific analysis of the photographs, and most interestingly, a section called “Visualizations,” that presents interactive maps and timelines allowing viewers to easily connect photographers, see where they worked and exhibited, who they interacted with, and even compare photographs by attribute, subject, or style.
Are you spending too much time with repetitive tasks in Photoshop? Photoshop actions enable you to record a process and save that information as an action which you can then use for other tasks down the road. Not only that, you can edit actions after the fact and customize them to suit your needs.
While you can make an unlimited amount of actions, including color correction, below is an example of how to resize images ideal for Powerpoint. Take some time to plan the steps of the actions before recording.
The Robert Frank Collection at the National Gallery of Art is the largest repository of materials related to renowned photographer and filmmaker Robert Frank. Spanning Frank’s career from 1937 to 2005, the collection includes vintage and later prints, contact sheets, work prints, negatives, three bound books of original photographs, technical material, and various papers, books, and recordings.
For a complete account of photographs, contact sheets, and work prints in the collection, see Robert Frank photographs, contact sheets, and work prints in the collection. The spreadsheet lists subjects photographed by Frank, in chronological order, along with the corresponding number of photographs, contact sheets, and work prints in the collection and the accession number of each object.
Have you ever wanted to eliminate the distracting background from sculpture photographed on-site? Cutting out the background can be very easy or a bit challenging, depending on how complex the image is. The magic wand tool can be a very effective tool when your background is simple in nature.
1. Select the magic wand tool from the toolbar.
2. Click on the area you want to sample. The magic wand will outline the area with flashing dotted lines.
3. Initially, the magic wand may only pick up some of the background. Use the sub-tools to add or subtract to the selection and continue clicking on the areas to add until the sculpture is isolated.
4. Use the Exposure tool to adjust the background to white or black, pulling it to the far right for white or far left for black.
5. You may need to use the clone tool to clean-up areas that the magic wand tool missed.
Flickr recently announced that they’ve developed an app for the iPad and iOS 8!
Now iPad users can view high-resolution images on the large retina dislpay screens, as well as share, fave, and comment on photos from other contributors. There are new tools for organizing your photos and a more robust search feature.
Additionally, the app includes a built-in camera interface, so photos taken with the iPad can be edited and uploaded directly into Flickr. There’s a small set of editing tools and filters, too.
For more information, visit the iTunes App Store, or stop by the VRC and check it out on our iPad!!
Yesterday, Getty Images released more than 35 million images that users can embed on websites and social media posts for free, so long as the images are for editorial and non-commercial purposes. With the embed feature, Getty Images includes a credit line and link to each image that users post. For a list of images available to embed, click here.
There’s been quite a lot of coverage about this monumental release of “free” images, including great articles from the Atlantic on “Why Getty Going Free Is Such a Big Deal, Explained in Getty Images,” and the Verge on “The world’s largest photo service just made its pictures free to use.” It’s important to note that not all Getty Images are free to use, and it’s very likely that contemporary photojournalism images, for example, will remain behind the paywall.
Also fun to think about on a Friday: How many photos have ever been taken?
The archives manager at Bishopsgate Institute recently discovered boxes containing more than 3,000 slides depicting London’s landmarks including churches, statues, buildings, and social scenes from the Victorian period to the early 20th century.
In 2007, a project to digitize the images launched, some of which can be seen here. More than 600 images were digitized, and in October 2013 were published in a book called The Gentle Author’s London Album.
For more information, visit the Spitalfield’s page on the album. To view a sampling of images, visit the ITV News article about the project.
Image: Traffic on Tower Bridge, 1905 Credit: Bishopsgate Institute