Gelatin in Film

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by SLNestler, Jun 13, 2004.

  1. SLNestler

    SLNestler Member

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    I just received a phone call from my niece, asking me, on behalf of a vegan friend who is considering photography as a serious hobby, whether there is an alternative to the gelatin in film, other than digital.
    Does anyone out there know whether the manufacture of B&w film involves gelatin of animal sources? Please advise.
    Thanks,
    Steven
     
  2. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    You are kidding right?.......
     
  3. MichaelBriggs

    MichaelBriggs Member

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    AFAIK, all pictorial films use gelatin derived from animal sources (hides and bones). There is an entire chapter on gelatin in Mees' book "The Theory of the Photographic Process".
     
  4. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    steven:

    your niece's friend might be outta luck if she wants to use some sort of modern analog process. your niece's friend might look into making calotype or wet-plates. calotypes involve making salted paper negatives and positive prints.

    wet plate photography involves making glass images using collodion and silver nitrate. i've used collodion b4, and even thought it was used to "coat cauterized wounds" during the US civil war, it *will* burn your finger prints off if you don't wear gloves, so incase she wants a sideline as a vegan safe-cracker ....:smile:
    it is also highly explosive (used to make double base explosives as well as propellant charge in the munitions industry) so it should be handled with extreme care.

    http://www.nls.uk/pencilsoflight/process.htm
    http://www.alternativephotography.com/process_wetplate.html

    - john