We definitely have a passion for restoring and bringing these old photos back to life. This is a 4x3 portrait we found at Barnfull O’ Goodies in Morrisburg, ON.
As you can see the original was very faded & yellowed. Even through the fade, we loved all of the detail still present in the original. Once we started the restoration & colourisation, we were blown away by just how much more detail popped out. We researched trending colours for the time & Bruce delicately restored & coloured this portrait ‘by hand’ using photoshop.
One of Bruce’s favourite details is the pin or button on the right side lapel. It appears to be our Canadian maple leaf. We couldn’t decide on the colour or the detail, so if anyone has any information on it we’d love to hear from you. We couldn’t decide on the significance of the pin to guide our creative colouring choice so we went with the traditional red.
My favourite detail is the silk watch fob hanging from his breast pocket. Similar styles we found to compare were dated in & around the late 1800s. It was interesting to learn that the hanging ornamentation was at one point an engraved medallion bearing a person’s signature & used as a wax seal to mark important documents or other correspondence. We wonder if it was purchased at Sears, Roebuck & Co., commonly known as Sears?
When we colourise the photo some colours are identified by reading the whites/blacks/greys in the monochrome image. As Bruce was colourising the gentleman’s suit, we had a couple of colours suggested within the brown & blue hues. We did do a version of the photo with a blue suit, but it made him look too young. We believe this man has red hair & green eyes so we opted to go with a brown suit. A creative choice as much as a guess.
We are open to any & all suggestions as to the story behind this gentleman. We would love to learn more about him & ultimately we’d love to find out who he was & if he was from Ontario or our local area where his portrait was found.