Monday, February 2, 2009

University of Washington, 19th Century Actors Photographs

This is a scanned collection of cartes-de-viste, cards with photographs of actors, used for publicity. The collection is searchable by keyword, and each item in the collection has a lot of metadata (which the website tells us was completed in 2002). The website does say that the images were digitally manipulated in order to get the best quality; they were scanned in greyscale, apparently since the cards themselves are black and white photos. The files are in .jpg format, which, as we discussed last class, means that some quality may have been lost during editing. Each item's metadata also has some brief biographical notes about the actor depicted.

The collection website states that most (not all) of the collection is available for viewing, but doesn't say how the collection came about or what the specific selection criteria were for digitization; it probably has something to do with the quality of the analog objects. This collection would likely be of most interest to theatre historians, especially ones interested in 19th-century theater practices and perhaps even costumes and specific actors.

--Amanda Mc.

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