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Authenticate photograph?

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Authenticate photograph?

Postby Jarnob on 19 Jan 2012 19:22

Good evening all,

i was wondering about methods how to confirm the authenticity of photographs.
I know about the blacklight test; newer photographs are made with chemicals which light under blacklight.
Besides that the manufacture mark on the photograph, glue marks on the backside and writings on the photograph can be of importance.
Besides that original photographs have a very high grain which make is possible to make out the smallest details in the photograph itself.

But: isn't it possible to re-develop scans of old photographs with authenticate photo paper and developping solutions which don't contain the chemicals of today??

Look at this photograph attached to this message: it doesn't light at all under blacklight and seems to be made on original ridax photo paper. It also is very sharp andsmall details can be made out when zoomed.
Still i do not really trust it te be genuine?!? Any other thoughts about this photograph?

Kind regards, Jarno Boer
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby peeved on 19 Jan 2012 19:50

Hi Jarno,

What I find somewhat disconcerting is that this photo (or copies thereof) has been auctioned several times during the last couple of years or so on eBay.de; IIRC by the same German seller. That vendor also seems to have multiple original copies of other shots to sell as well.

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Markus
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby Jarnob on 19 Jan 2012 21:36

So it IS possible to make 'new' photographs of original old photographs using the same photograph paper and developping fluid (without chemicals) - making the blacklight test useless?

And if so, would these new copies been made from original photographs, negatives or simply from other copies? If anyone can share info on this matter....
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby peeved on 20 Jan 2012 06:42

BTW there are also cropped copies of the photo in circulation. At viewtopic.php?f=47&t=151597&p=1589028&hilit=wespen#p1589028 there's one I bought before the vendor's selection started to give me flashes of déjà vu again and again, IIRC a couple of years back.

Markus
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby DourKraut on 03 Dec 2012 16:01

I spent quite a while picking up photos wherever I could. Eventually learned a lesson, the hard way, lucky it wasn't TOO expensive. Bought loads of pix on eBay, from a girl in Germany, which turned out to be bogus. They ALL passed blacklight, everything seemed "right", except none had ANYTHING on backs. Several even had that irregular, jagged edging that a lot of period photos had. Only snagged her by stumbling onto one of her auctions, doing a double take at a picture from France that I was SURE I'd bought. Dug out my copy, it was identical. Bought mine 4 months prior; she made sure to space her repro auctions so a buyer who caught her the way I did could no longer leave feedback. Spent two weeks trying to notify eBay by phone, got frustrated, gave up. Haven't bought there since, that was 5 months ago. Before that, I'd commented to eBay, repeatedly, about the LARGE percentage of repros (at least most of those listings, buried deep in the description, mention the word "repro") listed as "original period items"; eBay does absolutely nothing to police this situation.
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby B Hellqvist on 12 Dec 2012 00:33

I owned the very same photo. Bought a bunch from that German woman ("mybutterfly66" or something like that), but found out that they were recent copies, perhaps made from original negatives (while a few were lifted from books). The same tell-tale signs as noted above: no notes or stamps on the backside, no paper or glue residue, same photo paper, same slight sepia tone, same fresh feel about them. Now when I've handled several thousand original photos, I realise how naïve I was. Anyway, I complained, returned the photos, and got a full refund. I've seen the same photos peddled by a seller with the same surname and street address, but now with "Original" stamped over the auction photos.
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby DourKraut on 12 Dec 2012 02:24

Yeah. "My" seller may be same as yours, a girl in Schweringen, claims her name is Kati. Here's how bleeping stupid I was; first period when I bought from her, she was "antiqgirl", disappeared for awhile, resurfaced as "paratroop1942". And STILL I bought. Until I saw the repro "original" being re-auctioned. Aside from being disgusting behavior, wouldn't it make sense for them to just list them under "repro", or sell them in the "original" category, but ID them as repros, like about 60% of the photos listed as "original period items"? They'd still make about the same money. Kinda leaves a real bad feeling, especially about eBay & their apathy. There's an internet site that specializes in original pix & albums- think I'll re-google it and join. I like the pictures that much, as long as there's some assurance of originality.
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby Laurence Strong on 12 Dec 2012 04:19

I think she goes by "schnurrimaus53" now. Bought this a month or so ago. I had a gut feeling I was getting a copy, however I liked the photo and it did not cost a great amount IIRC. It hassince been relisted, she also sells pamphlets copied from period ones.

Larry
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby wm on 12 Dec 2012 09:48

Jarnob wrote:But: isn't it possible to re-develop scans of old photographs with authenticate photo paper and developping solutions which don't contain the chemicals of today??

It's not the chemicals it's the paper. It glows under UV because of optical brighteners added there to improve its whiteness. But paper without the brighteners is available too, and the brighteners themselves can be masked by covering the photos with something absorbing the UV light, e.g. varnishing. They say that you can even chemically disable them.
So the question really is if the extra step is worth doing or not in this case, and are they bright enough to know about it. :)
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby DourKraut on 13 Dec 2012 04:14

wm wrote:
Jarnob wrote:But: isn't it possible to re-develop scans of old photographs with authenticate photo paper and developping solutions which don't contain the chemicals of today??

It's not the chemicals it's the paper. It glows under UV because of optical brighteners added there to improve its whiteness. But paper without the brighteners is available too, and the brighteners themselves can be masked by covering the photos with something absorbing the UV light, e.g. varnishing. They say that you can even chemically disable them.
So the question really is if the extra step is worth doing or not in this case, and are they bright enough to know about it. :)


Well, the one weasel I dealt with was bright enough to figure out the u/v bypass process. What I can't figure out is (a) if you're that bright, why not do something constructive for $?, and (b) if at least half the pix I'm buying from you are going for $1-5, and 95% of the rest are $5-8, how the heck worthwhile is this to the "dealer"? Why bother? If you're gonna be as crooked as a snake with a bellyache, steal BIG! Or just stop being a scuzzbucket....
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby B Hellqvist on 13 Dec 2012 10:49

But then, if you sell 100 photos/month that cost you perhaps 50 cents a piece (eBay fees included) for, say, $5 on average, it adds up to a tidy profit in the long run. Low level scamming is less likely to become reported, the buyer more often than not chalking it up to a lesson learned and not bothering with reports or refunds.
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby peeved on 27 Jan 2013 16:26

Yet another different crop of the tank photo for sale on eBay at http://www.ebay.de/itm/6-Orig-Foto-Panz ... 2c6bba4553 .
All original, of course.

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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby sobel on 27 Jan 2013 17:33

What I can add to this is that unfortunately, it is really quite easy to steal/borrow images posted on websites and digitally turn them into authentic period pieces, and then sell them as the genuine article, in the end the scammers are only interested in extracting your money, I have spent many years dealing with photo manipulation, both old style darkroom and digital. Buy from a trusted source
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Re: Authenticate photograph?

Postby Mark in Cleveland, Tn. on 27 Jan 2013 21:26

All you have to do is buy any period photo album with war time pics( and these original albums are not rare), then start copying.via new digital scanning copiers/printers...MO MONEY/MO MONEY/MO MONEY!!!!And period newsreels still in period containers are around.
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