Hand Tinting Photographs

by Judy Uhrig

History

Hand tinting was how color was added to photographs in the "olden days." Since color photography was not invented yet, color was added to black and white photos using paints or oils.

Mary Kress. Medford, Wisconsin; http://www.noicedebugger.com/chris/kress_photos.htm ;
1898.

In the Classroom

This is a great activity for Art class to Science to Social Studies. Students can choose to add color to be subtle or surreal. If they are trying to create an authentic historical look, they will keep it subtle.

Choosing the Right Photo

Find photos that do not have a dark background. This uses printer ink and gives you less to color. If you have access to a color printer, then add a sepia tone effect to the picture to add a more authentic look. This also gives the photo warm tones.