creepy victorian photography


Craig Dunain Mental Hospital - Inverness, Scotland

Formerly known as Inverness District Asylum and Northern Counties District Lunatic Asylum. Opened 1864. Closed 1999.

Post Mortem Photographs

Victorian Post Mortem Photography 1837-1901

Post Mortem family photos and portraits 

Often a family would not have any group photos and after a family member had died they only have one last chance of a photograph together.

After they had passed away they would be dressed up and sometimes having eyes painted on their eyelids.

Sadly in this era child mortality was very high and a post mortem Photography would be the only way to have a photo of their child.

Imagine how difficult it must have been to pose with a dead loved one. At the time, the photography process was slow and you could not move while the photo was being taken.

In this photo you can see the dead girl is more in focus than her parents, as they moved while the photograph was being taken.

Sometimes, photographers would try to make it appear like the dead person was sleeping.

Notice the odd position of the curtain behind the boy? It’s likely there was someone behind it holding the boy’s head up.

See anything strange about the background? This girl is sitting on someone’s lap. The person held her in place while the photo was taken.

In this photograph, the girl standing in the middle is the deceased. The photographer attempted to make her look more alive by drawing on her pupils.

Theres just something about their eyes . I got goosebumps while making this .


Blast from the past the old abandoned the victorian Wentworth By The Sea hotel, photographed in 1999 B&W film. This is when I was first started doing photography. The hotel finally was bought by the Marriott and given a restored to its grand glory. 

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