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Basic Ambrotype and Tintypes
No prior experience needed just a desire to learn and create! Suitable for students, teachers, photographers, artists and anyone interested in 19th century photographic collodion processes.
All steps in the basic process will be covered: glass cutting and polishing, pouring collodion for glass (clear and black) as well as metal plates, silver bath sensitizing, in camera testing and exposure, development, fixing and varnishing the image.
Each workshop student will receive a collodion manual as well as a DVD containing many books on the collodion process from the 1850’s and 1860’s that are now in public domain. All supplies provided.
Workshop is limited to five students and will cost $125.00.
Intermediate Ambrotype and Tintypes *
*This workshop is restricted to students that have completed the Basic Ambrotype and Tintype workshop at Fountain Hill Studio or by permission.
In this intermediate workshop the student will learn about chemical formulations (Collodion formulas, silver bath strength and maintenance, developers, fixers)
Chemical measuring and weighing techniques and equipment needed.
Various “tricks of the trade” behind the scenes.
Shoot larger plates in Studio, up to 8×10 in size!
Workshop is limited to five students and will cost $150.00.
Building a Working Wolcott Camera for WetPlate*
Dec. 1 through Dec. 3 at Fountain Hill Studio (Workshop is Full)
This is a unique workshop only offered at Fountain Hill Studio!
*Due to the nature of the workshop, it will be limited to only students that have already taken the Basic Ambrotype and Tintype Workshop at Fountain Hill Studio.
Cost for building your own piece of Photographic History and shooting with it is: $225.00.
On May 8, 1840, Alexander Wolcott received the first US patent for an American camera. Patent number 1582 was awarded for a device that would “take likenesses by means of a concave reflector.” The camera was based on a concave reflecting mirror built by an associate Mr. Henry Fitz, similar to those used for making celestial telescopes. The concave lens was a big improvement over Louis Daguerre’s and Joseph Niepce’s daguerreotype process, in that it permitted the successful taking of life portraiture by significantly reducing the subjects sitting time from 30 minutes to only 5 minutes, while using Daguerre’s chemical formula. Another advantage of the Wolcott camera was that the resulting image was non-reversed. Although Wolcott’s invention wasn’t the first camera, it was a major landmark in the history of photography—and he does have the distinction of opening the world’s first photography studio in March 1840.
Wolcott called his New York City studio a Daguerrean Parlor. Photographic portraits taken by Wolcott’s camera were very popular even though the pictures were only two inches square. In 1841, Wolcott sold his patent rights to Richard Beard, who opened the first studio in Europe a year later.
I first came across a reference to the Wolcott Camera when a Facebook friend of mine, Guy Brown, who lives in Sheffield, England, posted a YouTube video for a laser-cut model. With trepidation, since I knew nothing about laser cutting or even who to contact to get something cut; I began to research into the building of my friend’s model. Laser cutters communicate through software, so I had to learn the language to convey my thoughts and drawings to the machine. After trial and error, and modifying Guy’s CAD design to match the requirements of the company that I had contracted to cut the camera, I finally sent my files out. The next step was to find sources for all of the hardware and screws needed to put the camera together. Tracking down parts proved to be a scavenger hunt that lasted for days.
After securing the hardware and receiving from the laser cutter my design, I proceeded to assemble the replica of the Wolcott camera together. After getting the camera built, I started to play around with it; I quickly found out the physics of the replica (i.e.: focal length of optical mirror and placement of the focus mechanism) was incorrect. The minimum focus was approximately 30 feet, certainly not a useful distance for most studios wanting to do portraiture. Once I did my own calculations for the correct focal length of the mirror and redesigned the interior of the camera to accommodate the modifications, I had a new camera cut. The new modified design works with a minimum focus of approximately 3 feet and is the camera that you are assembling for your very own!
Basic Handcoated Techniques – Cyanotype and Kallitype
No prior experience needed just a desire to learn and create! Suitable for students, teachers, photographers, artist, and anyone interested in 19th century photographic processes; this basic handcoated workshop will be used to teach techniques and skills needed to progress to more advanced processes such as Palladium and Platinum printing. A must workshop for the beginner and highly recommended for everyone!
The cyanotype has a long history in Photography. Invented by Sir John Herschel in 1842, photographers and artists have embraced the process ever since! Anna Atkins created the first book with “photographic” images in 1843. With care and proper technique, the cyanotype is capable of rendering a tonal scale that will rival the best silver gelatin modern printing paper and is far more permanent! The workshop student will learn formulas, toning and color shifts. The technique of making enlarged digital negatives will be explored and utilized in this workshop.
The early history of the Kallitype runs parallel to that of platinum printing in that both processes were arrived at through much the same research. Both processes used the same iron salt and ferric oxalate as the basis for their sensitivity to light. A correctly process Kallitype is indistinguishable from a platinum or palladium print except by destructive testing. There were complaints in earlier days that people were entering Kallitypes in Salons as platinum images, and since they could not be told apart, this constituted fraud. I think this says a great deal for the Kallitype process. The workshop student will learn formulas, be able to choose from three different developers to use for color shift and processing steps leading to permanence.
Workshop is limited to five students and will cost $125.00.