Archive for the ‘photography’ Category
I’ve been playing a fair bit recently with different ideas and antique processes. In large part because I’ve no access to running water in my current studio space, thus my re-visiting physautotype. It’s a nice process for me in that it doesn’t require water at all, and it’s really not terribly sensitive to light (I also have no capacity to black out my space during the day, closing the curtains and working quickly is sufficient ).
This was a bad pour, the imafe is from a lith negative I had lying about. It was very thin, it seems that physautotype likes thin negs.
This is from my digital infrared series, I finally found an output from these files that I like.
This was a test exposure, it gives you a decent idea of what the plate looks like without any special holder. There’s a lot of detail there when it’s displayed correctly.
So the next step is re-jigging my negatives to be a bit thinner, which should preserve the shadow detail.
I’ve also been playing with an idea about dageurrotypes.
This is as far as I’ve gotten, not so special really. But in this case I’m trying to use cheap silver plated flatware and I’m using iodophor steriliser with a wet treatment to create the sensitive plate, so even this level of success is pretty surprising.
It’s not something I expect to work out very quickly, but it is fairly cheap to do.
I finally got the process as far as this, it’s about as far as I’m going to take it for now.
This is a contact print from a lith negative. I coated both sides of a glass plate (gives a nice three dimensional effect) in a solution of violin rosin in ethyl alcohol (0.5g in 100ml) and then contact printed it for about three days exposure to blue sky on a window sill (this is not instant photography – If exposed to direct sunlight it’d be far faster), then developed it by exposing it to the fumes of mineral turps from about 1cm away on a flat plate. A separate development for each side.
This is the process that Niepce referred to briefly in one of his letters to Dageurre in the 1820’s – he said that printed on glass it makes a pleasing image when viewed in front of a dark surface. This (mine) is sandwiched in a black perspex case with a glass cover to protect it. I offered this to Geoffery Batchen, but he never responded, so it’s going in a box I guess.
I’m not taking this experiment any further for the forseable future, I’m thinking of a project involving travel, that and paying down a 78 thousand dollar student loan 😛
A bit of fitting to go, and I need to make a focus screen (Lubitel for scale).
It’s a fairly large camera 😀
[EDIT] Turns out that the kodak lens doesn’t quite meet my expectations – I’d really only thought about coverage, not that it would give me a range of magnification starting at 1:1 macro (which included the front of the focussing rail) and going up to about 5:1 (five times life size) – which is sure interesting, but not exactly ideal for the level of focussing technology I’m using.
So I’m cobbling something together out of an old pair of spectacles which will go from infinity to about 1:1 as well.
So I now have a system 😛
Well, the crit seemed to go ok, the feedback that I got was all along the lines of the stuff that I’d been thinking about when I was preparing and selecting.
Having given it a days thought, I shortened that in the critique to a verbal “I’m interested in how photography can make icons of ordinary things.”
My little wee 5×7″ print all on it’s lonesome, well, it does have a couple of vents to keep it company I guess – incidentally that’s the name of the gallery – “Vent” – not sure which one is ‘the’ vent – probably the one above my pic.
It’s quite a hard thing to view, cos it’s really as much a mirror as a print in an odd way – it’s black on black, but how you look at it determines the tones you see,
And, I’m reaching a point where I’m starting to see what a camera I’m building will look like – it’s a half plate camera for dryplate (the hole at the back is 7×7″ – it’s a big camera by my standards).
The front will be friction focus and will have front tilt, no other movements are planned in this iteration – I’ve been working on it for about a month on and off, I guess there’s another week or so of work to go.
And the obligatory studio shot;
Some things I’ve tried – first up an orotone – which is a fancy term for painting the back of a positive gold (you’re supposed to use a ‘particular’ paint, but whatev’s, I just used oil paint)
A black print (yup, I made that name up) – sorta like an ambrotype, but not like an ambrotype at all (silver gelatine liquid emulsion based) – I’m handing in one of these this week – it’s washing as I type.
The second I got a line;
The third I got a rhinoceroses bottom;
I messed up the development a bit, but it’s proof of concept – violin rosin and meths with mineral turps as a developer – a la Niepce. I’ve figured out a couple of things to improve the print – but learning to coat the stuff onto glass is top of the list – not easy compared to gelatin, or even collodion.
I have a masters crit Thursday, so after that I’m looking forward to doing some more of them, fun!