Memories of a time gone by

It’s taken a couple of weeks to get the ambrotype plates I made at the St Andrews Photography Festival workshop finished off for final viewing.

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It’s taken a couple of weeks to get the ambrotype plates I made at the St Andrews Photography Festival workshop finished off for final viewing.

The plates needed to be fixed for a bit longer and then rinsed again before applying a coat of Liquitex varnish to protect the images. These final processes were not without their problems with the collodion emulsion partly lifting on one plate while rinsing, and ‘sausages’ of varnish collecting along the bottom of the plates where I’d laid them to drain and dry. Some minor damage to the collodion was inevitable in scraping off the ‘sausages’, but these are lessons to be learned should there ever be a next time!

I have three plates: the first is spoilt by the emulsion lift but the other two seem to have worked out pretty well for a first time. I scanned all three as positives, i.e. with a black background in the manner that they would normally be viewed.

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I then removed the black background and rescanned and flipped the second and third plates as negatives. The results on the computer screen at least are more pleasing.

Group Shot
Group Shot. L-R: Brittonie, Fiona, Donald and Paul

 

Selfie, with a little help
Selfie, with assistance from Fiona

The workshop and the processes we used were discussed in my previous blog post

 

Author: Donald Tainsh

A lifelong explorer of photography

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