A school photographer told a first-grader he could shed his mask. He politely declined: ‘My mommy told me not to’ (Washington Post)

Washington Post: A school photographer told a first-grader he could shed his mask. He politely declined: ‘My mommy told me not to’. “On the day of his first-grade school photos, 6-year-old Mason told his mom he was excited to show the camera his new ‘big boy’ smile. He recently lost four teeth. But when the photographer asked Mason to take off his navy mask before snapping his picture, Mason politely declined, his mom Nicole Peoples told The Washington Post. ‘My mommy told me not to take my mask off,’ Mason replied.”

Smithsonian: Smithsonian American Art Museum Acquires Extraordinary Early Photography Collection From Larry J. West

Smithsonian: Smithsonian American Art Museum Acquires Extraordinary Early Photography Collection From Larry J. West. “The L.J. West Collection includes 286 objects from the 1840s to about 1925 in three groupings: works by early African American daguerreotypists James P. Ball, Glenalvin Goodridge and Augustus Washington; early photographs of diverse portrait subjects and objects related to abolitionists, the Underground Railroad and the role of women entrepreneurs in it; and photographic jewelry that represents the bridge between miniature painting and early cased photography such as daguerreotypes, ambrotypes and tintypes.”

Virginia Gazette: Library wants help finding the faces in the photos of Williamsburg’s first licensed African American photographer

Virginia Gazette: Library wants help finding the faces in the photos of Williamsburg’s first licensed African American photographer. “[Albert] Durant, the first-licensed African American photographer in Williamsburg, photographed life in the area from the late 1930s to the 1960s. Durant documented life from an African American perspective, photographing many sporting, social, school and city events during that time. Now, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library is hoping to fill in some of the blanks in Durant’s photographs. The library is working with the Library of Virginia to provide a digital collection of Durant’s photographs for the public to transcribe.” Currently about 100 photos are available with more on the way.

Gizmodo: ‘Deep Nostalgia’ Can Turn Old Photos of Your Relatives Into Moving Videos

Gizmodo: ‘Deep Nostalgia’ Can Turn Old Photos of Your Relatives Into Moving Videos. “It’s hard to feel connected to someone who’s gone through a static photo. So a company called MyHeritage who provides automatic AI-powered photo enhancements is now offering a new service that can animate people in old photos creating a short video that looks like it was recorded while they posed and prepped for the portrait.”

Lost and found: the photo project reuniting Moldovan villagers with their younger selves (The Calvert Journal)

The Calvert Journal: Lost and found: the photo project reuniting Moldovan villagers with their younger selves. “In 2016, film school student Victor Galușca found the negatives for thousands of photographs in an abandoned home in the northern Moldovan village of Roșietici….The incredible archive was made into a photo book, showcased at exhibitions in Chișinău and Bucharest, and is now available to view online. But the publicity also meant that people who recognised themselves in [Zaharia] Cușnir’s photographs got in touch with Galușca. The young photographer decided to embark on a new project: taking pictures of Cușnir’s former subjects with the black-and-white portraits of their younger selves.”

LowKey cool: This web app will tweak your photos to flummox facial-recognition systems, apparently (The Register)

The Register: LowKey cool: This web app will tweak your photos to flummox facial-recognition systems, apparently . “The application, called LowKey, is intended to protect people from unauthorized surveillance. It’s based on an adversarial attack technique developed by University of Maryland boffins Valeriia Cherepanova, Micah Goldblum, Shiyuan Duan, John Dickerson, Gavin Taylor, Tom Goldstein, and US Naval Academy researcher Harrison Foley. It alters images so facial recognition systems can’t easily use the data to find the depicted person in another image.”

Engadget: Google used a 64-camera rig to train its portrait lighting AI

Engadget: Google used a 64-camera rig to train its portrait lighting AI. “Google’s Portrait Light feature can make some of your more mediocre photos look a lot better by giving you a way to change their lighting direction and intensity. The tech giant launched the AI-based lighting feature in September for the Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5 before giving older Pixel phones access to it. Now, Google has published a post on its AI blog explaining the technology behind Portrait Light, including how it trained its machine learning models.”

‘You can almost hear the music’: Bringing back the legacy of a Hampstead photographer (Ham & High)

Ham & High: ‘You can almost hear the music’: Bringing back the legacy of a Hampstead photographer. “Laelia Goehr was born in Russia in 1908, but fled the country during its revolution in the early 1920s for Berlin at age 13. While in Germany, Laelia performed in a cabaret duo, The Stone Sisters, and even played in the Moulin Rouge in Paris. However, Laelia was Jewish and later escaped Berlin for Britain in the build-up to World War Two. The move to London with her husband brought her burgeoning cabaret career to an end – but allowed her to start her prolific career in photography.”

University of Illinois at Chicago: Alkebuluan Merriweather (BA, 2019) launches Black Matriarch Archive

University of Illinois at Chicago: Alkebuluan Merriweather (BA, 2019) launches Black Matriarch Archive . “Alumna Alkebuluan Merriweather (BA, 2019) has launched a digital platform titled Black Matriarch Archive. Black Matriarch Archive is a digital platform and archive that seeks to encourage members of the African diaspora to submit images and video documentation of black elders, whether they may be grandmothers, great-aunts, godmothers, or caregivers.” This is a project that uses Instagram as its platform. It’s early days.

‘Covid Will Not Win’: Meet the Force Powering Brooklyn Hospital (New York Times)

New York Times: ‘Covid Will Not Win’: Meet the Force Powering Brooklyn Hospital. “During the surge of Covid-19 cases this spring that filled Brooklyn Hospital’s emergency room and intensive care unit with the critically ill and the dying, the staff went in day after day, trying to save as many lives as they could. Now they are bracing for a second wave. These portraits of the hospital staff were taken during the grueling first wave. In interviews in recent months, the workers reflected on that period — what they had lived through and how they had coped, what they had learned and how it had changed them.”

Tens of thousands of prison portraits captured in 15 jails over 50 years: Portraits of Crime now in remarkable digital archive (9 News Australia)

9News (Australia): Tens of thousands of prison portraits captured in 15 jails over 50 years: Portraits of Crime now in remarkable digital archive. “Tens of thousands of prison portraits captured in 15 jails over a 50-year period are now accessible in a remarkable online database. In recent years the NSW State Archives digitised 46,000 images and collated them in an exhibition titled Captured: Portraits of Crime. Now these photographs all exist online in a searchable database.”

Watch the birdie: how a papier-mâché horse in Tbilisi Zoo grew into a popular photo studio (The Calvert Journal)

The Calvert Journal: Watch the birdie: how a papier-mâché horse in Tbilisi Zoo grew into a popular photo studio. “I was born in Tbilisi in the 1980s, back when the country was still a part of the Soviet Union. Visiting the zoo was a special event for me: it meant that I would get a Plombir ice cream, a cup of sparkling gazirovka (a non-alcoholic sparkling beverage), and a ride on an amusement ride adjacent to the premises. But the highlight of the day would always be getting the chance to sit on the papier-mâché horse that looked like it had galloped from a merry-go-round ride. I remember being helped onto the horse, filled with anticipation and excitement at having my photo taken, but also overcome with shyness in front of the photographer.” The author is working with the descendants of the photographer to crowdsource a collection of these images. […]

Inverse: A.I. Gahaku Turns Your Selfie Into An Oil Painting Masterwork

Inverse: A.I. Gahaku Turns Your Selfie Into An Oil Painting Masterwork. “Ready for your close-up? AI Gahaku is an online A.I. tool that’s going viral, promising to produce impressive selfies that make you look like an oil painting. The service promises to take images and apply one of 10 different styles, complete with museum description that makes the work seem ideal for the next gallery exhibition.”