Color photos of WWII

Order of Battle is a series of operational WW2 games starting with the Pacific War and then on to Europe!

Moderators: Order of Battle Moderators, The Artistocrats

Post Reply
bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Mon Nov 18, 2019 6:26 pm

I never use color photos in my scenarios. Whenever I come across them, I suspect "colorization" which I absolutely abhor (includes movies). Yet apparently there was some genuine color photography during the war, such as this:

Rare color photos cast new light on World War II

Nevertheless, as the article says, "It still seems a bit odd to see color photography from the Second World War. It still has the power to shock." That's why I will turn a color photo into black and white (and even age it a bit if necessary) before I include it in my stuff.

Image0104.jpg
Image0104.jpg (126.48 KiB) Viewed 1413 times
Image0104edited.jpg
Image0104edited.jpg (134.03 KiB) Viewed 1413 times
- Bru

gunny
Staff Sergeant - StuG IIIF
Staff Sergeant - StuG IIIF
Posts: 272
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:17 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by gunny » Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:59 pm

bru888 wrote:
Mon Nov 18, 2019 6:26 pm
I never use color photos in my scenarios. Whenever I come across them, I suspect "colorization" which I absolutely abhor (includes movies). Yet apparently there was some genuine color photography during the war, such as this:

Rare color photos cast new light on World War II

Nevertheless, as the article says, "It still seems a bit odd to see color photography from the Second World War. It still has the power to shock." That's why I will turn a color photo into black and white (and even age it a bit if necessary) before I include it in my stuff.


Image0104.jpg
Image0104edited.jpg
Yeah black and white photos definitely set the correct mood when playing OOB.

bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Sun Feb 16, 2020 2:40 am

gunny wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:59 pm
Yeah black and white photos definitely set the correct mood when playing OOB.
The vast preponderance of photography in WW2 was in black and white, as far as I know, and the popup messages usually read like newspaper articles of the time. Color just jars the senses in that, instead of reading the newspaper, or a set of orders with a photo attached, etc., one is looking through a window with bare eyes like a time machine. If OOB was a first-person shooter game, maybe that would work. Thankfully, it's not.
- Bru

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Sun Mar 01, 2020 5:22 am

Black and white is a putting away. It’s a bit like being in a museum.
Coloring prevents putting away. Coloring allows people to tell themselves, we are told a story in which I can recognize myself. These people I see in the image could be me. It was yesterday and finally it could be today and so we have this identification and we are more interested in this story

bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Sun Mar 01, 2020 6:20 am

terminator wrote:
Sun Mar 01, 2020 5:22 am
Black and white is a putting away. It’s a bit like being in a museum.
Coloring prevents putting away. Coloring allows people to tell themselves, we are told a story in which I can recognize myself. These people I see in the image could be me. It was yesterday and finally it could be today and so we have this identification and we are more interested in this story
That's an interesting viewpoint.

My own point of view is that when I see images in this game, I am looking at newspapers of the time, or a bulletin with a photo attached to it. Overwhelmingly, photos during WW2 were black and white.

I see black and white as archival and historical; you see color as vibrant and current. Two different ways of achieving immersion.
- Bru

gunny
Staff Sergeant - StuG IIIF
Staff Sergeant - StuG IIIF
Posts: 272
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:17 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by gunny » Tue Mar 03, 2020 3:51 pm

The 6 red kills show up better in the color photo I did not recognize them in the black and white so this person was an ace. !!! Plus his tray table has peanuts and a coke on it. ....

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Sun Mar 08, 2020 5:28 pm

bundesarchiv_bild_101i-274-0498-15_russland_soldat_mit_mg_34_recolored.jpg
bundesarchiv_bild_101i-274-0498-15_russland_soldat_mit_mg_34_recolored.jpg (274.07 KiB) Viewed 949 times

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Sat Mar 28, 2020 7:35 pm

Lydia Vladimirovna Litvyak died at the age of just 21 on August 1, 1943 in Krasnyi Luch. Also known as Lilya, she was a fighter pilot in the Soviet Air Force during World War Two. She was the first female pilot to shoot down an enemy plane, the first of two female fighters to earn the title 'fighter ace' and the holder of the record for the greatest number of kills for a female fighter. With twelve solo victories and four shared kills over a total of 66 combat missions, she was immortalised despite being shot down near Orel during the Battle of Kursk as she attacked a formation of German planes.

4374806000000578-0-image-m-45_1503395564864.jpg
4374806000000578-0-image-m-45_1503395564864.jpg (90.37 KiB) Viewed 811 times

bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:56 pm

That photo provides an opportunity to voice an objection once again: "colorization" which I absolutely abhor (includes movies). If you search for images of Lydia Litvyak, that image appears repeatedly and nearly all of them are in original black and white. In fact, there is one out there that blends the two formats:

Image0286.jpg
Image0286.jpg (535.72 KiB) Viewed 802 times

Colorization is a modern artificiality and therefore is an immediate turn off to me as to historical value. This does an injustice to true color photos of WWII, rare as they are, I know. Even so, every time I see a color photo purportedly from the era of WWII, I suspect colorization.

Even so, there was going to be a plus side to this post as I rushed to Wikipedia to see if I could use Lydia Litvyak in our current work on Winter War 1940. Alas, "Litvyak flew her first combat flights in the summer of 1942" and even more alas, "On August 1, 1943, Litvyak did not come back to her base . . ." making the window of featuring her limited to just over a year. :(

But were I to use her photo, it definitely would be the black and white version with all due respect to your opinion, terminator, which I reproduce here because it is interesting:
terminator wrote:
Sun Mar 01, 2020 5:22 am
Black and white is a putting away. It’s a bit like being in a museum.
Coloring prevents putting away. Coloring allows people to tell themselves, we are told a story in which I can recognize myself. These people I see in the image could be me. It was yesterday and finally it could be today and so we have this identification and we are more interested in this story
Nevertheless, designer's preference and choice for historical verisimilitude: B&W. :wink:
- Bru

prestidigitation
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Posts: 106
Joined: Sat May 27, 2017 1:24 am

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by prestidigitation » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:00 am

I certainly hope she'll show up in Red Steel. As Svetlana Alexievich showed, the role of women in the Soviet military was massively underplayed due to Soviet chauvinism. It'd be nice to see more women in an army that had huge numbers of them in every role from fighting infantry to colonel to fighter pilot to tanker to nurse.

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Tue Mar 31, 2020 4:41 am

Battle of Stalingrad in colour

:arrow: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... rs-on.html

4374806E00000578-0-image-a-33_1503394955666.jpg
4374806E00000578-0-image-a-33_1503394955666.jpg (123.09 KiB) Viewed 718 times

bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 2:04 pm

And here are the originals. (I'll stop doing this from now on, terminator. I don't want to be a nuisance. :) )

Note the plural "originals." Apparently there are two black and white versions of this photo floating around. My guess is that some authority wanted a more attractive view, so they had the sky smoke airbrushed out and the image lightened. It's definitely the same photo; the unfurling flag and the angle of the soldier's arm are the same as are the positions of the people and vehicles in the street:

jr4q147zu3e21.jpg
jr4q147zu3e21.jpg (126.96 KiB) Viewed 700 times
stalingrad_flag_1050x700.jpg
stalingrad_flag_1050x700.jpg (70.65 KiB) Viewed 700 times
- Bru

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Sun Apr 26, 2020 5:04 pm

So the RED USA faction really existed ?

capPointFlag_redusa.png
capPointFlag_redusa.png (17.9 KiB) Viewed 473 times

457C092D00000578-4996388-image-a-61_1508405643987.jpg
457C092D00000578-4996388-image-a-61_1508405643987.jpg (114.53 KiB) Viewed 479 times

Boarspear
Corporal - Strongpoint
Corporal - Strongpoint
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon May 04, 2015 2:39 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by Boarspear » Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:38 am

bru888 wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 2:04 pm
And here are the originals. (I'll stop doing this from now on, terminator. I don't want to be a nuisance. :) )

Note the plural "originals." Apparently there are two black and white versions of this photo floating around. My guess is that some authority wanted a more attractive view, so they had the sky smoke airbrushed out and the image lightened. It's definitely the same photo; the unfurling flag and the angle of the soldier's arm are the same as are the positions of the people and vehicles in the street:
Hmmm, colorization was quite popular at the time, and we have a colorized portrait of my Uncle who died on a B-17 bomber with the same "artificial" color as that of the sniper above. However I'm not sure how advanced they were with "airbrushing," as I thought this was an entirely modern technique (in fact it's a digitial photography term in general). I'm aware that "object removal" was in evidence during the deStalinization period (where people were removed from photos) but it's not all that sophisticated. Removing that smoke would entail quite a bit of precision work, wouldn't it? I don't really know -- I'm just curious as to whether they were that advanced in, say, 1945 or 1946.

bru888
Order of Battle Moderator
Order of Battle Moderator
Posts: 4414
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:39 pm
Location: United States

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by bru888 » Mon Apr 27, 2020 1:40 am

Boarspear wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:38 am
bru888 wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 2:04 pm
And here are the originals. (I'll stop doing this from now on, terminator. I don't want to be a nuisance. :) )

Note the plural "originals." Apparently there are two black and white versions of this photo floating around. My guess is that some authority wanted a more attractive view, so they had the sky smoke airbrushed out and the image lightened. It's definitely the same photo; the unfurling flag and the angle of the soldier's arm are the same as are the positions of the people and vehicles in the street:
Hmmm, colorization was quite popular at the time, and we have a colorized portrait of my Uncle who died on a B-17 bomber with the same "artificial" color as that of the sniper above. However I'm not sure how advanced they were with "airbrushing," as I thought this was an entirely modern technique (in fact it's a digitial photography term in general). I'm aware that "object removal" was in evidence during the deStalinization period (where people were removed from photos) but it's not all that sophisticated. Removing that smoke would entail quite a bit of precision work, wouldn't it? I don't really know -- I'm just curious as to whether they were that advanced in, say, 1945 or 1946.
Good thought. No doubt some colorization of these photos was contemporaneous and other colorizations are more recent and involve modern technology. Those are definitely the same photo of Stalingrad; I'd bet my house on it.
- Bru

terminator
General - King Tiger
General - King Tiger
Posts: 3822
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:48 pm

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by terminator » Mon Apr 27, 2020 5:20 pm

Rare color photo of knocked out Jagdtiger

aahw98wzedp31.jpg
aahw98wzedp31.jpg (222.41 KiB) Viewed 385 times

Jagdtiger number 131 of the PzJgAbt 653, Schwetzingen

qtsclguf5ld41.jpg
qtsclguf5ld41.jpg (47.51 KiB) Viewed 382 times

Zekedia222
Sergeant - 7.5 cm FK 16 nA
Sergeant - 7.5 cm FK 16 nA
Posts: 239
Joined: Mon Dec 17, 2018 9:30 pm
Location: Somewhere between Chattanooga and Anchorage

Re: Color photos of WWII

Post by Zekedia222 » Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:29 pm

Boarspear wrote:
Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:38 am
I'm aware that "object removal" was in evidence during the deStalinization period (where people were removed from photos) but it's not all that sophisticated. Removing that smoke would entail quite a bit of precision work, wouldn't it? I don't really know -- I'm just curious as to whether they were that advanced in, say, 1945 or 1946.
I think that removing the smoke in that picture would be (relatively) easy, at least compared to removing, say, those trucks down on the street in that photo. You might notice in the “airbrushed” Picture, the sky is almost universally the same color. In the unedited picture, the sky varies in color quite a bit (though a lot of that is probably aging). It’d probably be pretty difficult to do, but I think it was probably more than possible. Granted, I know little of photography and the like, so what do I know :wink:
Winchester: Klinger, you're dumber than you look, and THAT boggles the MIND.
A great quote from one of my favorite TV shows, M*A*S*H

Post Reply

Return to “Order of Battle Series”