This is the eye of a beautiful, happy young woman photographed by BT around 1910. When I have the opportunity to do a proper scan on an image produced by a high quality camera, such as BT usually used, I can get to this level of digital detail. It’s far greater detail than can be seen on the web slideshow, and even far greater detail than most people would casually see on the original image itself.
In many cases the lens of the camera catches details that are hidden behind imperfections in the development solution and printing process. Often, as in this eyeball, you can see the reflection of what appears to be the natural studio lighting with possibly some added lights, and the shadow of the camera and photographer in the middle. [Click on the image for an even closer view.]
The eyes are always special to me. I try to give them extra attention, because I know that I’m the only one who has looked into these eyes from so close in maybe 100 years. And nobody may ever look again. While I don’t give the whole image as detailed of a cleaning for basic web and preservation prep, out of respect I give the eyes special attention. It’s my way of saying “Hello and thank you.”
I doubt that someone will be able to look into my eyes at this close distance in 100 years.