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Category: Pigments

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The Art of Color Analysis: Using Analytical Chemistry in Pigment Research

Posted by: Bobbi Hinton

Preservation Science Intern Jessica McKenzie breaks down some applications of analytical chemistry in the Library of Congress, where she uses Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy to expand the Preservation Research and Testing Division’s database for pigment analysis. She then demonstrates how she has assisted in applying her work to collection items.

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Register Now: Inks & Skins

Posted by: Bobbi Hinton

Register to join us at the Library of Congress on September 13th from 10 am - 4 pm. Speakers will address the history of the Irish manuscripts, complementary research projects in which they are involved, and the results of the analytical techniques involved in the research. As Inks&Skins is a collaboration between heritage science and humanities, the importance of a visualization platform to share the results with humanities scholars will also be discussed.

Girl with dark hair and dark eyes smiles broadly, wearing a white t-shirt and black sweater with a small golden necklace.

Tracking Colors: Building a Pigment Reference Database

Posted by: Bobbi Hinton

My summer at the Library was spent capturing data from colored pigments in order to build a reference database. Using a high-tech portable FTIR instrument, I prepared samples and collected infrared readings from 50 pigments in the Library’s collection using three of the portable instrument’s attachments. I compiled 150 measurements in order to create the database’s foundation.

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Autumn Color Chemistry

Posted by: Tana Villafana

It’s Fall! Time to break out those comfy sweaters. Time to hold a mug of warm cocoa in two hands and watch yellow tinted leaves slowly topple to the ground. Perhaps some of us are looking at the rich textures and thinking “I wonder if I could get a great color out of that leaf?” …