Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Another Hand Painted Tintype

This is the second one of these I've found. (See my post 10/9/09.) Colored tintypes with eye color, or a rosey hue to the cheeks are quite common. Less common are tintypes that have had their entire surfaces painted in an attempt to make an image that looks more like a painting than a photograph. Usually those tintypes were painted over in a style that normally would be closer to the limner paintings of the colonial and early national eras than photographs. Like limner paintings, they were often made by itinerant artists who were just as comfortable decorating, furniture, clock faces, or making store signs. This image, and the one posted earlier, were done by a commercial service, and may have used more skilled painters than the travelling artists responsible for most painted tintypes. Of course this image, like the earlier one, has lost almost all of the surface paint, so we'll never know. My guess is, that what is left, is little more than a first inking that established specific areas to be painted. The admonition to not remove the glass from the picture may indicate that paint was also added to a covering glass, or it may indicate that the tintype was glued in some way to a sheet of glass.

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