Saturday, 31 December 2011

Archiving & storing glass plates

I found this quiet holiday period being a good time for organising a way of storing my plates, (finally !).
So far I was keeping  some of them in empty sheet film boxes, lying flat one on another, divided with sheet of paper, some in boxes with racks, (which where actually constructed for transporting plates taken on location), or everywhere around in my studio (getting dusty) . Generally - a little mess, but the main problem is the fact that this type of storage capabilities actually ended. 
So I decided to orgainise it a little bit and
1.  I'm wrapping glass plates with an acid free thin paper,

2.   putting them in separate, standard, envelops,

3.  labeling with information like: type of glass, title/subject, type of varnish, year, camera and lens, portrait/landscape/still life,
4.  then packing them vertically and tightly into boxes with lids :

Looks like it should work, at least until I'll have a room full of boxes, and looks like I'm starting a New Year kind of organised ;)
Happy New Year everyone!!!

Monday, 26 December 2011


I guess all the gifts are given until now, so I can publish portraits from my session with Levi.

Monique and Levi had an idea to get Levi's collodion portraits as a Christmas gift for his dad.
It was quite an intensive session as Levi is a very restless young man, so we had a little trouble to get a sharp image. At the end and with little tricks we managed to get the results I'm happy with.
Hope Levi's dad likes them too. :)

8x10' black glass ambrotype, Industar 300/f 4.5, 13s, studio lights

8x10' black glass ambrotype, Industar 300/f 4.5, 13s, studio lights

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Studio lights for winter time.

Just a short summary on the lights I got recently for WPC indoor photographs.

After considering all the options which were tidily and nicely summarised by Kasia Kesicka HERE I decided to go for a polish version of Falcon Eyes - VITO LAMPS (cheaper)
Their specification is exactly the same as Falcon Eyes, that means I have 2 lamps, each with 9 x E27/28W bulbs(equivalent of 140W each / 1260W in total),light temperature ca.5500K. I have a soft box and reflector for each of them.

I managed to do five sessions, testing lamps with different format cameras and different lenses and the results oscillate between 10 and 16 seconds exposures. (was hoping for less, but it's still not bad, however challenging with children, I might need to look for a brighter lens in the near future)

I am mostly using:
one lamp as a main light with reflector and all 9 bulbs on,
the fill light in different variants - mostly 5 or 7 on, with softbox umbrella only or softbox on,
no other light for background or hair so far.
Lights set as close as possible to model.

Cameras & lenses:
8x10 camera plus Industar 300mm/f 4.5
4x5 Toyo camera plus Schneider Symmar APO 150mm/f 5.6

Here are some examples:
Tamara, 4x5 Toyo,  f 5.6, fill light: softbox + 9 bulbs on, 15 s,

Tamara, 4x5 Toyo,  f 5.6, fill light: softbox  + 5 bulbs on, 16s,

Sharon, 4x5 Toyo,  f 5.6, fill light: softbox umbrella + 7 bulbs on, 12 s.( overexposed)

Sharon, 4x5 Toyo,  f 5.6, main light 8 bulbs on, fill light: softbox umbrella, 5 bulbs on, 12 s.( still slightly overexposed)

Lubor, 4x5,  f 4.5,  fill light: softbox umbrella, 5 bulbs on, 15 s.(overexposed)

Vlad, 8x10,  f 4.5, fill light: softbox umbrella, 7 bulbs on, 12 s.

Anton, 8x10,  f 4.5, fill light: softbox umbrella, 7 bulbs on, 16 s.