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I’ve got a routine going of pouring my own 4×5″ gelatine silver plates and then scanning them and inkjet printing the results but I’ve felt unsettled because I would like to have a 100% analogue process, [AAA] in stead fo [ADD]. To address this I’ve been messing with salt printing some of my 4×5″ plates.…

Read More Victorian book-form, whole-plate holder on Intrepid 8×10 camera

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For my birthday the family humoured me by playing at making portraits in the garden. I broke out the Intrepid 8×10 – a special occasions camera – and we shot some very old Ilford Multigrade paper as negatives. My daughter, Faith, is getting pretty good at doing the large format dance and did the whole…

Read More Fifty Six

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I’ve been putting things on Instagram without blogging them – this is against my new social media policy. How sad I have one! As we are still in lockdown with a “stay at home” order in effect I’ve been playing with my Sinar P studio camera. There is precious little room in the flat so…

Read More Trapped indoors doing still lives (that really should be lifes)

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Using dry plate technology from the 1880s I feel drawn to anything from the Victorian era. Living in Edinburgh we are blessed with such subjects which is good because the current Covid-19 restrictions mean I can’t leave the city. Today I photographed the Forth Rail Bridge (opened 1890) and the result is convincingly late 19th…

Read More My time machine is functioning well

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We learn by making mistakes. The third photographic emulsion I made was great. It was clean and contrasty and just worked. So I thought I’d jazz it up a bit for the fourth emulsion by adding ten drops of 1% Erythrosine (that’s pink food colouring E127) to increase the green response. It didn’t work. Right…

Read More Throwing out Emulsion #4 … but #5 looks good!

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My three month old iodising collodion finally got to me. Today I mounted an expedition to the bottom of the garden to make some collodion negatives. I’ve often wondered whether it would be feasible to do backpack collodion – to head for the hills with all that I need to make a few plates and…

Read More Backpack Collodion: Expedition to the end of the … garden

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During the Covid-19 lock down I’m messing with cyanotypes and want to have a go at Argyrotypes. These processes use contact negatives the same size as the finished print. The negatives need to have a long tonal range – be very contrasty. Many people produce such negatives using an inkjet printer and transparency film. This…

Read More Negatives for alternative processes

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With the family at home for the Covid-19 lock down there is no space to set up the darkroom and so little hope of analogue photography beyond developing film in the bath – but fortunately we still have cyanotype printing! Coating papers can be done on the kitchen table and developing in plain water in…

Read More Cyanotype: A lockdown friendly print process.

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The winter months have been tough in terms of colds and flu-like illness that have kept me from walking all the days I’d wanted. Nothing particularly bad but enough that I’ve had to take care of my body and get the bus one way or the other across town. I continue to walk in the…

Read More Marathon Monk: To 23rd March 2020 – 441 days & 2,646 mindful miles & into Covid-19 Lockdown