Pompeii Eruption - The Human Reality by Keith Richardson

Pompeii Eruption - The Human Reality by 


The final passion of a Roman citizen in the colony of Pompeii as poisonous fumes from the final great eruption of Mt Vesuvius flowed down its slopes engulphing all lay in its path with a steel asphyxiating grip. This human body brought respectful silence from a crowd of visitors who could only seek to imagine the agony and despair, thousands of years ago.

I take great delight in good design, excellent photography, ongoing learning, and rising to creative challenges. Many of my photographic images on RedBubble are from extensive travels where I enjoy ‘getting to understand’ local customs and experiences. A second strand of my RedBubble portfolio is represented by various design projects.

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  • Carmen  Cilliers
    Carmen Cilliersover 5 years ago

    I got to tell you – that’s depressing! Amazing, but depressing… ashes to ashes… dust to dust, this is a pretty literal reminder eh?

  • So well put Carmen. I thought a lot before photographing this, but realized that getting to Pompeii was the realization of a childhood dream, and these bodies were equally a part of it as were the buildings and roads…

    – Keith Richardson

  • barnsis
    barnsisover 5 years ago

    Wow, What a way to be preserved through time. Awesome image, Very well done.

  • Thank you my friend.

    – Keith Richardson

  • Heike Schenk Arena
    Heike Schenk A...over 5 years ago

    This is not really a human body. The excavators from Pompeji found holes in the lava and filled them with plaster. After hardening they removed the lava around the plaster and bared this boddy-forms. The fervent ash,flowing down the Vesuvius, burned completely the real bodies.

  • I questioned our guide at some length about this, Heike, and he told me that the bones remained, and the flesh decomposed away, leaving a cavity in the compressed ash that was eventually filled by the excavators of pompeii, as you described.
    If this is correct, in what we are seeing above, the skull is the real thing, but the body is plaster cast filling the same space originally occupied by the flesh.
    That’s my take on it, anyway. Many thanks for your thoughts Heike.
    I wonder what others may have to say on this topic?

    – Keith Richardson

  • Trish Mistric
    Trish Mistricover 5 years ago

    Wow..what a powerful image. I love how you framed this.

  • Thank you Pmistric

    – Keith Richardson

  • Lenny La Rue, IPA
    Lenny La Rue, IPAover 5 years ago

    Whether it’s an actual human body or not, the image is just as powerful to me. In my shooting of graveyards, I tried to show this much respect by keeping the images black and white. This one is very well presented this way and I GREATLY appreciate being able to see something real from the actual event!

    The added history is nice but now I question my understanding of the definition of a “body”. LOL! Does it have to have all its parts? Do they all need to be visible? Or is a human skeleton encased in ash a human body? I’ve got no clues but I want to see as much of this exhibit as I possibly can.

    Priceless capture. :-)

  • I appreciate the time and care you have taken with your comment Lenny – you are obviously a THINKING observer!
    Thank you…

    – Keith Richardson

  • I loved your Feely Lake abstract Lenny!

    – Keith Richardson

  • Lenny La Rue, IPA
    Lenny La Rue, IPAover 5 years ago

    Thank you very much for taking the time to comment on YOUR arts page about MY arts page! LOL! Cool, bro!

  • Dorothy Venter
    Dorothy Venterover 4 years ago

    As I see it nature itself captured the essence of these people in their final moment. Isn’t it also a form of photography – 3D?
    Keith, thank you for sharing this. Pompeii always fascinated me.

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