New Portrait Portal – Library and Archives Canada (LAC)

Library and Archives Canada (LAC) has a new ‘Portrait Portal’, apparently giving access to some 15,000 images of Canadians as shown in paintings, photographs, cartoons, even on hockey cards. Confusingly, but perhaps happily, this database includes more than portraits. There are some nice photographs of people at the Williams Lake, BC Stampede in the 1960s, for instance.

Many of these images werer already available on-line but this ‘Portrait Portal’ is searchable by keywords which should be helpful to researchers. See the Search Help link for more about the search. You can search by place name which isn’t mentioned there, as well as by the artist, photographer or subject’s name, or any other term found in image descriptions or titles. Asterisks* may be used in wild card searches, and quotations are allowed to limit results to exact phrases.

Also on the Search Help page is an invitation to contact Library and Archives Canada if you have more information about one of the images.

Included in today’s announcement was a note that “LAC is committed to posting 2,000 digitized portraits every month for the coming years.”

The Conditions of Use for images from this collection could be clearer, but copyright and credit information is given in the accompanying notes, as in the familar LAC Archival catalogue.

Library and Archives Canada, Portrait Portal: http://www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/portrait-portal

Library and Archives Canada Portrait Portal – this review by M. Diane Rogers.