Autochrome depicting a young boy sitting on the ground with a toy train set. He appears to be holding an autochrome in his hand. The box for the train set is next to him. This image was photographed by Clark Blickensderfer circa 1914-1920. The image possibly depicts one of Blickensderfer's sons James Clark Blickensderfer (1912-1990) or Richard Holmes Blickensderfer (1914-1977). Autochromes were the first photographic process to successfully produce color images directly from nature without hand coloring. These early color photographs were made on glass plates that were coated with dyed potato starch granules.
Clark Blickensderfer, a self-taught pictorial photographer specializing in capturing the American West, was born in Denver, Colo. on September 17, 1882 to Dr. James Clark and Eva (White) Blickensderfer. Clark attended East High School in Denver and went on to study civil engineering at Columbia University in New York City. On June 8, 1910 he married Elizabeth Walker (b. circa 1889) and they had four children James Clark Blickensderfer (1912-1990), Richard Holmes Blickensderfer (1914-1977), Catharine Blickensderfer Yeager (1920-2006), and Elizabeth Blickensderfer Ashe (1924-1998). Blickensderfer took up photography circa 1910-1914 and frequently photographed in Rocky Mountain National Park and other regions around Colorado. In addition to landscape photography, he was passionate about ornithological photography as well. Blickensderfer was a charter member of the Colorado Mountain Club (CMC), and also served on the photographic committee. He frequently held photography lectures and tutorials at the club and even held his very first exhibition at the 3rd annual CMC photography exhibit. A member of the Pictorial Photographers of America organization of New York, Blickensderfer exhibited many of his photographs in salons and galleries across the world. Blickensderfer remained active in photography until the time of his death in 1962.