Red Velvet Hat

Red Velvet Hat

Somewhere in the wilds of Bavaria, a bright-eyed, rosy cheeked, peaches and cream young woman, sporting a schick red velvet hat, is waiting for the right boy to make her laugh, then sweep her off her feet! And maybe they find that first laugh at the local beer hall. There a jolly duo plays for their happiness – accordion and cigar box guitar (do they play cigar box guitars in Germany?) roughly tuned to vibrate in sympathy with the heart strings of gay young lovers! Such is the power of music for art. Here it suggests an entire narrative of romance and a European venue! We must disclose, however, that this beautifully colorized photo from the Carney’s collection is most probably of an Australian woman from the 1920s. We heard Roaring 20’s flapper music with this one – but doesn’t composer Joe Cramer’s track allude to music that might be heard in the same era across the ocean – perhaps even in the burlesque clubs of a decadent 1920s Berlin?  Perhaps the dance is in three rather than two, but the sentiment is the same – one of rollicking, joyful abandon.  And be the language of courtship German, English, or otherwise, the language of hope and intent conveyed by our date’s bright blue eyes is universal. The Carney’s Colour Photo Creations collection is the work of Mike and Caroline Sadler, hailing from Perth, Australia. Their process begins with the high resolution scan of an original vintage black and white photo. Artistic colorization breathes new life into these timeless images. Colorized photo art for sale is available in the Midisparks Art...
Fancy Lace Edwardian Woman

Fancy Lace Edwardian Woman

Humility, pride and strength are expressed in this colorized photograph of a beautiful Edwardian era woman. Accompanying our view is the joyfully romantic piano solo of Elize Kaisser. No less than 100 years separate us from the Edwardian era. High fashion at the very beginning of the 20th century, informed by English King Edward and his circle, nevertheless engage us. And certainly the fashion innovations and evolutions of the period are compelling. Wide brimmed and ornate hats make bold statements about women’s rising status in society. Tight skirts along with narrowing and rising hemlines offer the first siren calls of sexual liberation. Fashionable waistcoats likewise comment on the accelerating struggle for equal rights by adding a certain masculine strength to the female fashion statement. Perhaps what makes the feminism of this era, and by association the image before us, so compelling, is the context. The context of the woman’s struggle for equality was a desire to contribute more fully to the strengthening of family and society. The goal was not to become more like the man – smart feminism has never been about that – but rather to become a more fully expressed woman. The Edwardian female liberation movement was about fully realizing feminine potential to contribute in family and society. We see not only humility in our Edwardian beauty’s face, but courage. There is a struggle underlying the perfectly smooth, cream-colored complexion of our lady. She is quite immediately rooted in the more restrictive traditions of her mother and grandmother. She is asked now to step out and assert herself in ways which she must invent. It is...
Edwardian Gentleman

Edwardian Gentleman

We are quite impressed with this dapper Edwardian gentleman. And well we should be for he is the complete male fashion plate of the day. From the brown bowler hat, to the blue cravat winding around a wingless high collar, to the three-piece gray suit complete with lapel chain and white hanky in the pocket, this Edwardian gentleman seems fully put together and ready for his evening on the town. We turn on composer Stohg’s audio track with some expectation of genteel or otherwise elegant strains that might fit the narrative of the upper crust on display. Instead, a fatalistic piano chord immediately suggests something seriously amiss. And if we had not noticed before, the music draws our attention to our man’s sideways glance, sinister and calculating. Does he observe his next victim perhaps? We are reminded of the 1920s gangsters, or even of gang culture in our day, where outward appearance lends an air of respectability or cool. And we can’t help but root, just a little, for the criminal. And the music puts just the right amount of tongue-and-cheek humor into the mix to let us know that’s okay, even expected. Our Edwardian Gentleman on the Midisparks Art greeting card makes a bold, even provocative statement. It certainly makes for a “guys” card. It speaks of strength, mystery, even seduction. If you like sending greeting cards that make a point, or an impression, or otherwise incite a reaction, our Edwardian Gentleman card is for you. The Carney’s Colour Photo Creations greeting card collection is full of these unique personal statements to add emotional flavor to your special...
First Kiss

First Kiss

Young boy and girl share the wonder of their first kiss in this colorization of a 1920’s photograph by Carney’s Colour Photo Creations. Carney’s is in Australia, but the boy’s stylish Gatsby flat cap was certainly a fixture of the period in the United States and European countries as well. Known also as a newsboy cap, it is made of 8 triangle panels that meet at the top with a covered button made in the same material. It has a small brim that the top rests on. The baggy look was standard. In the summer these caps were made of a light colored linen or cotton poplin material, lined in silk to breathe. In cooler weather the caps came in tweed, herringbone wool, and corduroy as well. Darker colors were worn in the winter- blues, greys, and browns-in solid, plaid, and check patterns All classes of men wore these hats, even boys selling newspapers on street corners hence the newsboy hat name. It was mostly a working mans hat from working class origins as a fisherman’s hat. Given the relative lack of clues, other than a hat ubiquitous to the era, about the location of our young couple’s first kiss, we can happily rely on the audio to offer a suggestion. In this case, a happy accordion melody places us easily in some Western European country, France perhaps, or Italy. That there is not certainty about venue only makes it easier for us to transport our own memory into the picture, to fill in the gaps with our own sweet experiences from early youth. We hope the happy music...
Electric Cloud Rainbow

Electric Cloud Rainbow

Photographer Shelly Neff’s colorful storm cloud seems to beg some active, hard hitting audio track. This would seem appropriate given the bright yellows that energize this brooding cloud, as if G-d Himself was shooting swatches of paint at the formation from some cosmic paint gun. Likewise, the deep reds at the base of the mostly deep blue cloud pulse like some insistent kick drum in a House beat. The actual audio solution by composer Pat Kammerer is both counterintuitive and remarkably informative. Really the colorful storm cloud needs no energy enhancement from the music. Rather it benefits from the inward looking and subtle sounds from the composer’s unique sound palette. What Patrick’s audio does for me is to develop gradually the electrical charges (white lightning-like streaks) that are woven into the fabric of the cloud. There comes a moment in the track when that charge erupts. Did you catch it? The composer concludes his subtle narrative with a bit of heavenly choir, suggesting a spiritual dimension to, or blessing upon, this mysterious cumulonimbus. We think Shelly’s bold colorization works well as a greeting card product. The Midisparks Art greeting card is large, 7″ X 5″, has a luxurious linen finish, and is blank inside and on the back for your note. The card comes with envelopes and may be purchased in the Art Shop by clicking on the ‘shop’...
Photo Coloring – Art or Vandalism?

Photo Coloring – Art or Vandalism?

Do you love seeing modern colorizations of old, vintage photos? Is photo coloring an enhancement that deepens your engagement with the previously black and white image? Do you discover details which might have been missed if not for the highlight offered by hues of yellow, red or blue? Or perhaps you are a purist and believe that the colorization process compromises the integrity of the original. Do you feel that photo colorization represents a form of graffiti, vandalism which marks up and covers over the subtle effects uniquely achievable in the world of gray scale. Maybe you feel cheated of the opportunity to imagine for yourself the subject’s actual colors. There is much room for debate about the merits of old photo coloring. In addition to viewpoints about the actual transformation of the image, there are questions about the collection value of colorizations. Is a photo colorization of a vintage photo in and of itself a collectible? Perhaps the treated historic image can only be regarded, at best, as a new work of art. We thought it would be interesting to pose these questions to an artist actually devoted to the colorization process. Perhaps we might gain some insight into how at least one individual values this work and how the colorizations themselves can be valued. To this end, we contacted Mike Sadler, proprietor of Carney’s Photo Colourizing, Perth, Australia.  Mike and his wife have been engaged in the process of restoring and colorizing old family photos, mostly portrait photos, for well over 25 years. Mike was somewhat surprised about being contacted by a Springer Spaniel.  Nevertheless, he kindly agreed to respond to...

Silly Roses

Artist and photographer Tabitha Borges presents an image of sisters laughing. Do you remember warm vacation days of childhood, lying in the field with your brothers, or sisters, or best friends? Stretched out on the grass, head to head, you formed a pinwheel of shared secrets and feelings, of pure joy in the bask of a summer sun and the freedom of school’s out. We hear the laughter clearly, laughter evidenced by the mouth wide open smile and crinkle squint eyes of the girl face up. And if we have forgotten that laughter also comes from the eyes, we only need look at the faces of the other two girls to remember, and to know this gleeful moment is fully shared by all three. Tabitha shared with us her process of creating this happy image as follows: “Was shot from standing above the subject looking down on the hillside outside my home with my EOS Canon Rebel. The pink and white roses were a birthday present from the three daughters: Autumn eldest, Camille middle, and Hope youngest. It was a very fun and merry moment. After the shot I cropped, added bubbles, and added an Adobe filter. We must wax poetic about those three roses around which these happy faces form a circle. Surely the unbridled joy of these girls has brought these cream blooms into existence. And we suspect that the white bubbles which run a trail across the photograph are percolating new blossoms, also inspired to fullness by the girls’ enthusiasm. Composer Mark Ratcliffe offers up an audio track that makes of this joyful moment a celebration...