Dating postcard backs

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These papers were , times more light sensitive than print out papers and eventually became the paper of choice. Their speed not only allowed them to be used with an enlarger but it increased production speed as well. Bromide Prints - Bromide prints are developed out producing a very stable image due to their large silver particles.

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They have a warm to blue-black color and are highly subject to tarnishing. While permanent bromide paper was developed alongside chloride papers, its cost, difficulty to process, and lower tonal range kept it from being widely used in America. Large quantities could also be produced in consistant color because they did not require toning. However there was no demand for mass production until real photo postcards became popular.

Bromide paper was relatively fast and was meant to be used with an enlarger. Rotograph and Kodak both manufactured bromide paper. The words Bromide Print often appear on these cards rather than a brand name, or they go unlabled.

The Message on My Oldest Postcard - Dated 1877

We may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites. I have always loved the nostaglia of old postcards, great lens, angel blessed. The first stamp was the Penny Black, issued on 6 May I used to collect postcards when I was a kid. I hope that this has given you some guidance as far as what you should be looking for in order to decide on how old a postcard is.

Chloride Prints - These silver chloride papers in a gelatin emulsion were much faster than traditional papers that required sunlight exposure. They became known as gaslight papers because of their ability to be exposed indoors under gaslight. They produced a good tonal range with high detail. They were often toned a warm brown to avoid their natural red to purplish brown color.

These papers were sold in heavy weights with preprinted backs for specifically creating real photo postcards. The emultion on these papers were generally applied to paper with Baryta sizing, which was only available from Germany until Kodak began to manufacture it in The brand names of these papers allow us to date many photographs today.

A warm brown chlorobromide paper with improved tonal range started being used in Europe in Bromide also started being added to American made silver chloride prints to increase speed but not on a consistent basis. Velox paper without a postcard back was manufactured until Some Kruxo cards have no stamp box. The sulphur Hypo solutions used to wash out excess silver and fix the print cannot be entirely washed off and they to in time yellow paper. Older papers also often had unappealing coloration so they were toned or printed on dyed paper. This is parcially due to the paper quality itself and also from the diffusion of light as the image is projected onto the paper.

Modern photo papers also contain optical brighteners not found in older papers. When exposed to long wave black light these new papers will glow a bright white. When newer resin coated papers entered the market real photo postcards were no longer being made in any significant number to produce postcard backs for them. Edmond Becquerel made the first color print in but there was no way to fix the image onto paper at that time.

While some strange forms of color prints were made by Heliochromy or the Vidal process, they were crude and saw no commercial applications. Color transparencies predate real photo postcards and were in wide use in the early 20th century. The cost of processing this new type of paper was too prohibitively expensive for the production of postcards.

Hand Coloring - The real photo postcards that do exist in color were colored by hand. This was done throughout their history using very subtle to garish means. Most were colored with water base paints though thinly applied oil paints were also used.

Special coloring kits were eventually marketed aimed at the amateur. Even the toning of photographs were pushed beyond the natural for expressive purposes producing very deep blues or sepias. Many of these hand colored cards that depicted women and children were produced in Europe while in America colored views were dominant.

How to Estimate the Age of a Postcard

Real photo cards continued to be hand colored even after color prints were introduced. Since they cannot compete realistically with color photography or printed photochromes, hand coloring on modern cards takes on a more stylized look.

Postcard swap - January 2019

Some publishers printed cards with ink to closely resemble real photo postcards. They usually have a glossy surface that reflects light off the darkly printed areas in a similar manner to the silver deposits on a photograph. Other cards were sometimes printed matte but on a textured paper to look similar to salted photos.

A rough paper surface can hide tell tale characteristics of printing ink. These cards were not created to deceive the buyer, for on close examination the differences were often easy to see, but meant to entice those interested in photo cards to find these appealing as well. Stratton - These cards were produced with a real photo back but the image is printed with an obvious halftone screen. Many real photo postcards wound up being created from negatives originally shot to create large photographic prints.

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To make a standard sized postcard from negatives that needed to be contact printed the image always had to be cropped. Though white borders could always be created they a more complex option so the image on most of these cards was simply bled to the edge. This continued to be true even when Kodak introduced cameras that would shoot postcard sized negatives.

Postcard Dating

The most common exception to this were cards shot through a stencil to provide a decorative white border. These stencils were usually cut out of tin or heavy paper and would be sandwiched between the photo paper and negative during exposure to the sun. While these stencils could be purchased in stores and came in various designs, many forgoed the expense and made their own.

Homemade stencils were rarely perfectly symmetrical and are a tell tale sign of non-commercially printed cards.

Another clear sign of homemade real photo postcards are the ragged edges sometimes found on cards made with salted paper where the photo sensitive emulsion is brushed on. When the effect is exaggerated it is most certain that it was done so for stylistic effect. Other cards that have an irregular or crooked line between the image and the border are more likely the sign of poor craftsmanship.

Stamp Boxes for Real Photo Vintage Postcards

The smaller negatives required postcard sized prints to be enlarged often with the aid of an easel to hold the paper in place, and white borders became more common. Though most commercial real photo postcards had now begun to be mass produced in processing machines, the increasing number of small sized negatives from a growing variety of amateur cameras continued to be contact printed adding some unusually broad borders to real photo postcards.

The First Picture Postcards

Guide to Real Photo Postcards. Palladiotype - Silver to brown in color. Platinotype - Blueish silver in color, sepia tones since SOLIO - no markings on back. AZO - two variations to the back. AZO - VELOX - six variations to the back. VELOX - three variations to the back. CYKO - three variations to the back. EKKP - ARGO - CYKO - six variations to the back. NOKO - NOKO The exact dates used beyond are uncertain. PMO - VELOX - two variations to the back. KRUXO - KRUXO note publishers name in box.

CYKO - DOPS - EKC - sometimes tinted warm. Real Photo Postcards are photographs that are reproduced by actually developing them onto photographic paper the size and weight of Postcards, with a Postcard back. There are many Postcards that reproduce photos by various printing methods that are NOT "real photos" The best way to tell the difference is to look at the Postcard with a magnifying glass. If the photo is printed, you will see that it is made up of a lot of little dots, the same as a photo printed in a newspaper. A Real Photo Postcard is solid, no dots.

Postcard paper types and descriptions from period literature and advertisements prepared by Jeremy Rowe.