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metz44

who is this beautiful silent star?

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I read it on goldensilents.com ... very sad. I never heard of her before, which is why these posts are very informative.

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I didn't know her name, but I thought that looked like a Ziegfeld photo. The "soft focus" style was popular in the old days. I don't think that is due to the camera lens or a filter. I think it was done by turning a glass plate over on its back and contact printing it, causing the image on the photo paper to be slightly out of focus, since the emulsion was lifted slightly off the surface of the photo paper by the thickness of the glass in the glass plate.

 

Like this one:

 

http://www.doctormacro.info/Images/Prevost,%20Marie/Annex/Annex%20-%20Prevost,%20Marie_04.jpg

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There was a rumor at Twentieth, that Shirley Temple's close-ups were shot with gauze on the camera lens, or sometimes they would smear a thin film of Vaseline on the lens to soften the effect.~

 

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That's quite possible. There were different ways to get a soft focus effect and a diffusion effect. I've made different kinds, including the kind I mentioned about the glass plates.

 

I discovered years ago that the "celophane" on a pack of cigarettes works as an emergency diffusion filter. I used to use that when I photographed a news subject who needed a little help with the close-ups.

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