Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Salt print.

It is not too far from albumen to salt printing (albumen is essencially a salted paper print, using albumen as binder). It is actually much easier to prepare salt solution then the eggs' whites albumen, and it's less smelly!
Same fixer and silver sensitizing solution, as for albumen, can be used - at least that's what I did.
Just mixed water, salt and gelatine (- most popular receipt, details below).
The main issue stays the proper negative. This time I've used an old, one of my first collodion portraits, accidentally overexposed - waiting  for printing test until now :)
..a lot to learn on this processes, it's just a record of the first tests..

30 min exposure, halogen lamp 400W, 4x5 WPC negative, water colour paper


5 grams Sodium Chloride
0.5 grams Gelatine
250 ml Distilled Water

Mix gelatine with one fourth of the water and let it bloom a bit. Heat the rest of the water and dissolve Sodium Chloride (Sea Salt) in it. Then mix the two together. Cover the paper with salt solution and leave to dry.
Sensitize with - I've used 15% silver nitrate solution in distilled water, that I've prepared for albumen first. (different sollution can be used, most typical - 12%, but 15% should result in increased contrast). Leave to dry.
Expose. Wash in water. Fix (again - same as for albumen) :

75 grams Sodium Thiosulphate anhydrous
(as I had only ST Peptahydrate I've multiplied the required amount by 1.56 =117g)
500 mL Distilled Water
1g sodium carbonate (washing soda, which you can buy or you can 'do' (like in my case) by heating baking soda) (some receipts do not include it)

Wash well - ca 30 min.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Printing Collodion Negatives - albumen & photo paper tests

All I can say, so far, is that I need to work more with negative's densities, and possibly different ways of their intensification, but I'm glad I have tried it finally.
It is working and I've got something to start with :)

First Albumen print (8x10) :

Ilford Multigrade IV rc paper, developed in Rodinal (8x10 contact print) :

albumen and photo paper together:

Ambrotype for comparison (8x10)  :

Negative (doubled exposure and development time, plus redevelopment with a few drops of silver nitrate) :

Other photo paper prints from thinner negatives (4x5) :
(some of them were printed as cyanotypes a while ago LINK1 & LINK2)

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Little improvements..

...4x5 and 5x7 inserts to 8x10 holder :

what means I don't have to carry 2 cameras for different formats, anymore, I have a new format ('in between' size), and I can use my 300 mm Industar lens with 5x7 or 4x5  - should be nice for portraits or just for change.
Simple thing, but not that easy to do, due to little thickness of these elements.
I did them from balsa wood first, but it soaks up chemicals so badly that collodion stick to it (and the frame rather wouldn't survive long).
Finally my skilful friend Pawel, a carpenter, managed to put them together for me. I think I'll  ask him for 8x8' square and 4x10' panoramic formats as well :) 

5x7 tested on Lubor,
as you can see the enthusiasm of my model was growing with each photograph (hard life of photographer's partners:)

 Lubor & Rysiek 5x7, clear glass ambro

Lubor 2, 5x7

Lubor 3, 5x7