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What techniques are used to add color to old black and white footage

Adding color to old black and white footage involves a process known as colorization. This technique was initially done by hand, with artists meticulously adding color to each frame of the film or photograph. However, with advancements in technology, digital colorization has become more prevalent. Today, colorization artists and historians use software to add color to black and white footage, aiming to recreate historical moments accurately. The process often begins with importing and enhancing the video footage, followed by assigning colors to various objects in the scene. While some objects' colors may be assigned based on common sense, others may require more research and analysis.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has also played a significant role in colorizing old black and white footage. Algorithms can analyze the footage and assign colors based on patterns and textures. AI-powered tools can also upscale the footage, making it look more detailed and vivid. For instance, Denis Shiryaev, a Russian YouTuber, used AI algorithms to colorize and sharpen old movies, enhancing them to 60 frames per second. These tools can be a powerful way to bring the past back to life, providing a new perspective on historical moments. However, the use of AI in colorizing old footage has also sparked controversy, with some arguing that it can alter the original intent and meaning of the footage. Despite this, AI-powered colorization remains a popular technique for adding color to old black and white footage.

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