Sometimes colorized photographs can be better than the originals

For the most part, this collection of iconic photographs colorized by various authors will probably leave you cold. But some of them—like this atomic bomb explosion in the Bikini Atoll—surpass the original black and white images. In this case, it's perhaps because the starker contrast between destruction and paradise.

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Iconic Black and White Photographs, Colorized

A sizable number of history's most unforgettable images were photographed in black and white. Now, through the digital process of colorization, we can see how these scenes might have appeared in person.

The picture above was taken by Joe Rosenthal in 1945 during the Battle of Iwo Jima.


Hoover Dam Turbine Construction, early 1930s

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(via NolanFans)

Bud Fraker: Audrey Hepburn, 1953

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Jack Delano: Sergeant George Camblair learning how to use a gas mask in practice smokescreen, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, 1942

(via Shorpy)

Seth Kinman, a Californian hunter and trapper, 1865

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Ruth Orkin: Albert Einstein At a Princeton University Luncheon in 1953

Dorothea Lange: Unemployed lumber worker goes with his wife to the bean harvest. Note Social Security number tattooed on arm, Oregon, August 1939

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Mark Twain relaxing in a garden, c. 1899-1901

Toni Frissell: A model floating in the water at Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida. Published in Harper's Bazaar in December 1947, colorized by Michael Catanachapodaca in 2012

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(via Shorpy)

Portrait of Dorothea Lange atop a car with her giant camera, February 1936

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(via Shorpy)

Testing a bulletproof vest, Washington, D.C., September 13, 1923

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Che Guevara

Malcolm Browne: The self-immolation of Thích Quảng Đᝊc, 1963

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(via Diacritics)

Charlie Chaplin, 1915

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Operation Crossroads Baker Event in Bikini Atoll, 1946

(via Imgur)

Roger Higgins: Salvador DalĂ­ with ocelot and cane, 1965

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1927 Solvay Conference Photo

(see earlier)

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Yousuf Karsh: Albert Einstein, 1948

Charles Darwin

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Margaret Bourke-White: African American Flood Victims Lined Up, 1937

(via Imgur)

Alexander Gardner: The last living photograph of Abraham Lincoln, 1865

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Dorothea Lange: Country store on dirt road, Gordonton, North Carolina, 1939

(via Shorpy)

Yousuf Karsh: Winston Churchill, 1941

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George Orwell

Dorothea Lange: Migrant Mother, 1936

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Yousuf Karsh: Ernest Hemingway, 1957

Alfred Eisenstadt: Sailor Kiss, VJ Day, 1945

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(via reddit)

Eddie Adams: The Execution of a Viet Cong Guerilla, 1968

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(via Imgur)

Mauretania's first Chief Engineer with other gentlemen in Canada Dock, Liverpool, 1909

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(via Imgur)

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Pictures are colorized by Mads Madsen, except where noted otherwise.

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