My God it Works!

Discussion in 'Silver Gelatin Based Emulsion Making & Coating' started by J. Miller Adam, Nov 11, 2009.

  1. J. Miller Adam

    J. Miller Adam Member

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    Dear All Gelatinoids,

    I've been reading these posts for some months now and have finally managed to make my first glass plate negs, using Osterman's emulsion formula from the Lightfarm website. It's still very slow (3 min exposure f/16, lots of reciprocity failure taking place I'm sure) and a bit foggy, but for the first batch I'm delighted.

    Here's my first (and only) image so far.

    (see attached image)

    I developed this for 20 minutes in D-76 1:1-ish, and am wondering if that is the best developer for the purpose. I don't quite have all the ingredients for mixing my own developers yet.

    All your discussions made this a much clearer process and I appreciate all you are doing to bring all this knowledge into the light (dang – now it's exposed...)

    Thank You!

    J. Miller Adam
     

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  2. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Congratulations. That same formula is posted here somewhere. It includes some of Mark's photos as well. It is a very nice emulsion that we estimate to be about ISO 3 - 6. It may include some comments about increasing speed. I forget the actual post, but if you want more information, let us know here. I think we can get the speed to the 12 - 25 range.

    Keep up the good work.

    PE
     
  3. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Congrats, nice first image!
     
  4. Denis K

    Denis K Member

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    I believe that all glass plate negative work should be discussed on the HybridPhoto site because like a digital camera if you don't like the image result you can just bleach off the plate and recoat it. :tongue:

    BTW: Nice work.

    Denis K
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2009
  5. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Just imagine a digital camera pouring hot slurry over your new pants and shiny shoes each time you delete a photo from the camera... :surprised:

    Now that would be an effective counter against the digital onslaught! :tongue::D

    Marco
     
  6. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    How about pouring hot slurry over a digital camera? My 5x7 plate camera that I use to evaluate emulsions was in much better condition when I bought it. And my 4X5 Press Camera that I took to a Collodiun Workshop has never been the same
    Bill
     
  7. dwross

    dwross Subscriber

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    Absolutely outstanding! It looks to me like D-76 worked well for you. You could try different dilutions when you have enough plates to play with.

    I'm looking forward to seeing all your upcoming successes. Thank you for sharing your results.

    d
     
  8. hrst

    hrst Member

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    Congratulations! Contrast seems very good and coating is uniform. It's perfect. Keep on experimenting!
     
  9. Emulsion

    Emulsion Member

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    Congratulations on your excellent results! The photograph looks great.

    The excellent book "Alternative Photographic Processes" Second Edition has a section written on the Osterman emulsion making formulae/process. It also has a brief section on a suggested developer to suit. The article says that Dektol has been used effectively for processing the emulsion. It also mentions a D-49 developer.

    I highly recommend the book, it has a lot of great information. Perhaps your local library can source a copy?

    Emulsion.

     
  10. Emulsion

    Emulsion Member

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    PE,

    Your input is very valuable.

    What is the simplest way to increase the speed of this emulsion?

    Thanks From,
    Emulsion.

     
  11. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    That's awesome, congrats!
     
  12. dwross

    dwross Subscriber

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    James' book is an excellent resource for all alternative processes, including Mark's dry plate work, but except for a couple of additional illustrations, everything that Mark wrote for the 2nd ed. is on The Light Farm, including additional information that was edited out of the book article in the name of brevity (an affliction of paper publishing thankfully not shared with electronic publishing).

    http://www.thelightfarm.com/Map/Books/Osterman/MapTopic.htm

    http://thelightfarm.com/Map/DryPlate/Osterman/DryPlatePart4.htm

    Happy Cooking!
    d
     
  13. pnance

    pnance Member

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    Wow!

    What else can I say, I'm impressed.
     
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  15. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    I'm having lunch with Mark at George Eastman House on the 20th. I'll make sure that he knows about this. I know it will please him very much. I want to wait and bring it up at the table with our other photo engineers. That way, I can see the smile on his face. :smile:

    PE
     
  16. mark

    mark Member

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    I definately envy you folks who have the time and space to do this stuff.
     
  17. totalamateur

    totalamateur Member

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    that's excellent! was that an print (if so - what paper) or is it an inverted scanned slide?
     
  18. dwross

    dwross Subscriber

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    Well, I can't seem help myself. Here goes: weighing in with advice :smile:

    'Time' and 'Space' are very subjective quantities. Now and again we really don't have enough of one or the other, but I'd be willing to bet you could make emulsions if you want.

    First, space: The smallest and simplest of darkroom spaces will do fine, including temp/convertible areas. I made a living doing custom fine art printing for other photographers out of a hall bathroom for over a year.

    Second, time: I'm planning on posting soon a workflow schedule for dry plate photography that will let someone spend 1 to 1-1/2 hours a night on the successive steps of the process, allowing dry plate shooting once a week, i.e. start making your emulsion on Monday night, be ready to shoot by Saturday, process on Sunday, and repeat. What it may lack in convenience or volume is more than made up for in the sheer romance of it (one romantic's opinion!).

    d
     
  19. totalamateur

    totalamateur Member

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    I tried to resist the urge to comment, but I agree - I make my emulsion in a 5x 5 foot walk in closet and work anywhere from 50 - 80 hours a week. If it weren't for a multitude of other hobbies, I think I could make and develop 12 plates a week - but alas, finding stuff I want to shoot is what take the time for me!

    I have 0 experience in photgraphy, so I'm sure someone with a little knowledge of the dark room could do the same, easily.

    Now if I could only pipe a sink into that closet...
     
  20. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Dear Emulsion,
    Increase the intensity of your lighting!:D
    Bill
     
  21. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Sorry, I missed that post.

    The Osterman emulsion assumes no sulfur or sulfur + gold, or assumes active gelatin.

    So, the "fix" is to use sulfur or sulfur + gold or active gelatin.

    PE
     
  22. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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  23. Kirk Keyes

    Kirk Keyes Member

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    Denise - I really like your idea of setting out a time plan for emulsion making. being able to see where things can be paused or carried on the next day should help people be able to get into emulsion making. I know my time is very limited, and I do exactly as you mentioned as far as my emulsion making.
     
  24. dwross

    dwross Subscriber

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    I had a 'My God it Works!' moment this weekend. Vaughn Hutchins gave a carbon printing workshop in Newport, OR, and he was generous enough to let me drop in and test his handmade carbon tissues with a couple of my glass dry plate negatives. It's a match made in heaven. I loved the outcome. Vaughn's carbon prints have a beautiful three-dimensionality (You really have to see his 8x10 contact prints of the California redwoods to believe them.) I'm afraid I can't claim that portraits of stuffed animals can complete with the redwoods, but the classic elements of tack sharpness and bas relief are there. If that weren't enough to justify the process, carbon has a very long tonal range. The white flowers in this plate are the very definition of bullet-proof, yet they printed in without the shadows losing detail. Carbon printing definitely adds another tool to the box.
     

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  25. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Guys;

    Generally, a home made emulsion has a softer toe and shoulder than a production emulsion. The only production emulsion that comes near to that is Azo. Therefore, your home made emulsions tend to have more detail in the toe and shoulder. This is what Denise decribes and what my students generally observe.

    PE
     
  26. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hello to All,
    Even before reading Denis's post, I have been planning on taking a Carbon Workshop. I have not decided who's workshop to take, but it will be one that teaches how to make carbon tissue. I have some wild plans. They all involve glass as the final support.
    Carbon tissue is probably the most stable of all photographic processes.
    Bill