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"Photorealistic Project"

medium.com/@voshart/photoreal-

I super-approve—I dgaf about white & metal statues, I like seeing photorealism just like the ancients.

But they don't have the Eastern Roman emperors—I want to see my boy Justinian, and Basil II the Bulgar Slayer.

Also there's no way these guys were this blond, is there? Surely the ancient writers recorded hair color? All the blond Italians today are descended from the Norsemen who rampaged through there a thousand years later.

@22 «In choosing bust / sculptures, my approach was to favor the bust that was made when the emperor was alive. Otherwise, I favored the bust made with the greatest craftsmanship and where the emperor was stereotypically uglier — my pet theory being that artists were likely trying to flatter their subjects.» I approve of this methodology! 😄

@22 Blondes: Probably some of those were dye jobs, Roman women often dyed their hair blonde to look younger, men may have too.

Gauls who did have blondes started invading or being hired as mercenaries in 300s BCE, didn't stop until the fall of Rome, but those would never have been patricians.

But the Romans did write and paint some of themselves as blonde, so: Maybe.

@22 No, there were blondes in Italy previous to the Longobardi, just not as much perhaps. Keep in mind they trod the same road the Celts did when they pushed on to Rome. Italy was a crossroads.

There would be a way to survey that with some statues perhaps having preserved traces of the old paint pigments which formerly made Rome so vibrant. Perhaps various ochres yet wait to tell hair, eye, and skin tones of the emperors.

Fun project, thanks.

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