Daguerreotype on glass plates?

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Robert Hall, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    So for some reason this came as news to me. I understood that the process needed to be done on a silver surface. Now in a couple of references I have seen the statements of Daguerreotypes being done on glass. I understand that the image is fragile and would be quite typical to lay a piece of glass over the top to protect the image.

    Is this factual? Have Daguerreotypes been done on glass?

    Thank you.
     
  2. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    Bump
     
  3. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    I thought that the "magic" of the daguerreotype was produced by the mirror it was supported by. Without that it would just be a glass plate with an image on it.
     
  4. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    Dags were originally done on metal plates that were silver plated, sensitised by iodine fumes. No reason this couldn't be done on a silver mirror that did not have the usual laquer coating normally applied to protect it from tarnishing.
    What you may be thinking about is another process called ambrotype, a collodian emulsion positive process that has a black backing to make the silver image look lighter by comparison.
     
  5. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    just to add onto what gary already said ...

    people often mistaken ambrotypes for dags.
    they are both found in cases that tend to look the same ...
    it is tilting the image and seeing the negative as well as the positive
    that is the dead give away ...
    some of the early ambrotypes had a 2nd glass plate that was put
    ontop of the glass image to "seal it" / protect it (in the case ) ...
    as you mentioned ...

    this site has a little info on both ..
     
  6. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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    Daguerreotypes can be be made on silvered (mirrored) glass, or any pure silver surface. The problem with silvered glass is that it is incredibly fragile, and tends to flake off in the fixer or gilding. Attached is a example of what happens.

    (Attached: Traditional mercury developed whole plate Daguerreotype on silvered glass)
     

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  7. Colin Graham

    Colin Graham Member

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    Still pretty awesome!
     
  8. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi All,
    This thread caught my eye because I am interested in all types of images on glass. Abot 10 years ago I posed this same question to a lady chemist who's husband was a Daguerreotype maker. She thought that,in order to get enough silver on the glass to make a real Daguerreotype,the piece of glass would become opaque. This would defeat the purpose of using glass instead of the traditional copper.
    I have never made a real Daguerreotype, only the so called "Modern Daggerriotype" which dose not use mercury for developing and looks pale beside The Real Thing. But I would tend to agree with the Lady Chemist, who's name escapes me.
    Bill
     
  9. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    thanks jason

    that is beautiful!!

    john
     
  10. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    I think thats why a clear laquer is applied over the image to protect it. I suspect also the silver was peeling because it was applied to the glass poorly. Maybe the glass can be etched prior to the chemical deposition process to give it some tooth for the silver to adhere to, since it will not be used as a mirror from the glass side anyway.
     
  11. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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    To my knowledge Daguerreotypes were never commonly lacquered. In fact, I have never heard of a Daguerreotype being lacquered. Beginning in the early 1840s Daguerreotypes were gilded.

    Perhaps you are thinking of collodion images?

    In any case, there is a long discussion somewhere on APUG about how to increase the adherence of silver to glass. I never thought to etch the glass and will someday try it. I suspect that the matt surface of the glass would effect the surface of the silver and decrease reflectivity.
     
  12. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    Depends on how fine the etching is and how thick the silver is applied. I imagine with the right ratio the silver will polish up to a good finish.
     
  13. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi All,
    Am I to understand that some of you who are participating in this Thread actualy make, or have made, real mercury developed Daguerreotypes? I would love to hear the detailes. I have always been "chicken" to try.
    Bill
     
  14. Kirk Keyes

    Kirk Keyes Member

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    Bill, I have a couple of bottles of mercury I can give you. For some reason, people are always giving their old chemicals...
     
  15. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    Thank you all for replies, and I know we are the "if it can be done we have done it" kind of group, but do we have anyone who might take a stab at answering the question directly?

    Would anyone think this was a standard of the process right at first? Do we have any references to using glass plates? I would think that it would be "unusual" to use glass because of the above stated issues.

    Comments?
     
  16. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    Is this factual? Have Daguerreotypes been done on glass?

    Thank you.[/QUOTE]

    *******
    No.
     
  17. sionnac

    sionnac Subscriber

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  18. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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    I can't say for certain (I am a positivist by day) but I do not believe that Daguerreotypes were made on silvered glass in the 19th century. I have never found reference to this in any of the 19th century texts I have read, which are quite a few, nor have I ever heard of a 19th century Daguerreotype on glass.

    Still, since I have done it, I see no reason why a 19th century practitioner could not have done it. Of course, they would have had less need to do so, since manufactured Daguerreotype plates were easy to come by in the 1840s, and relatively cheap.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 10, 2009
  19. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    No Kirk,
    I already look too old for my 22 years!:tongue:
    Bill
     
  20. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    [QUOTE=Robert Hall "if it can be done we have done it"
    Huhh?:confused:
    I have rarely read anything with which I disagree more strongly. I will believe that "The Earth is Flllaaat(!) first! I have done some things that no one has ever done before, nore would a sane human being ever want to.
    :D:wink:
    Bill
     
  21. Kirk Keyes

    Kirk Keyes Member

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