I dabble around with different web resources for my genealogy and photo interests.
MyHeritage (which I’m not a member of), recently unveiled a new feature wherein you can upload black and white photos for an automated colorization process.
This technology is based on an algorithm developed by software engineers Jason Antic and Dana Kelley — they call it “DeOldify” — and MyHeritage basically licensed this from them for use. More info about it can be found at this link.
You don’t even have to be a MyHeritage member to try it out — but it only allows a few free freebies — before you must join as a member ($99/year and up).
So I thought I’d give it a try — it takes only a few seconds and you can easily download the colorized version of each photo you upload.
First up is my original Dague family reunion shot — wow! impressive! I think the flesh tones are convincing –and am particularly impressed by the color of the greenery/leafs on the house. Someday I need to correct the light/fading artifacts in the grass and it’ll look quite good.
Second up, is the wedding day shot of Joe and Marty Jordan (Erin’s maternal grandparents). Adds just enough color to enhance the realism of the street scene.
Next up is the boyhood, playing outside with the dog scene of Erin’s paternal grandfather Clifford “Pokey” Pickett (holding the dog), with his brothers and presumed friends/cousins. It looks like the software has a tendency to play it safe and homogenize the lighter color of clothing.
Next up — we have the DeVoe family at the park, with my mother Penny the littlest girl in the front. This one is a bit strong and over-saturated (likely from the processing I did to the photo — just shows I need to keep improving) , but it’s still a reasonably realistic colorization.
Last up, we have the Cornelius Wise family — with the top left-most gentleman suspected to be my paternal great-grandfather, Hutsel Calvin Wise and the man below him being my paternal great-great grandfather, Isaac Newton Wise. Some fading issues on clothing in places noted.
Super cool technology, right!? I’m hard-pressed to think I could do any better at it manually in photoshop even with a lot more learning and practice — let alone considering how much extra time that can take. This likely only keeps getting better over time as the software/algorithm continues to be refined and improved. The future is bright (and colorful) for lovers of old photos!