The man in this photograph is dead.
“In England, the deceased were usually photographed in their caskets. In the United States, however, it was traditional to pose the deceased person as if he or she were still living. Photographers had tricks of the trade such as stands and supports, makeup to hide pale skin, and even methods for opening the eyes and retouching photographs to subtly alter the blank expression of death.
Children were usually posed in bed or in the arms of their parents. Adults were more often posed sitting in chairs or even standing with their bodies supported by special frames. Even beloved pets were sometimes photographed on their owner’s laps after death.”
You can see part of the stand that is holding him up behind his feet.
Humans are so fucking weird.
I hate to be a wet blanket* but I have to say something because this is one of those rare occasions that I can weigh in on a subject I actually know about.
This isn’t a standing post-mortem and in fact most standing post-mortems are fakes. The stands you see in photos like these were used to keep the subject still because of the time required to take the photo. Standing post-mortems were not common practice.
*FALSE! I love to be a wet blanket.