Monday, June 6, 2016

Not All Is Rosy: Afterlife Portraiture in Victorian England:

Apologies for being macabre with this post but I found quite an interesting article from the BBC about death portraiture in Victorian Britain where right after the death of a loved one, usually a child, photos were taken of the deceased with their siblings or entire family for a portrait. 

The advent of photographs was one way to immortalize the departed ones and to keep their memories alive also. The photo above shows a young girl propped up in a chair with her dolls all around as if only sleeping. 

The pretty girl on the left with the soft curls and ruffly white dress had passed, her body was made to stand and it even appears as though she is among the living with her siblings. 

It was said that sometimes "eyes" were drawn to the corpses so they would appear to be awake for the photography. The article mentioned that in this photo, the deceased daughter appears clearer than the parents because she was motionless and was captured with lesser artifact while shooting. 

There is no indication of anything amiss in this photo of a boy despite it being taken after his life ended. Proof of the photographers and makeup personnel's mastery in their craft is laid bare in the photos as they are able to make the subjects appear alive.


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