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Will S
08-07-2006, 11:54 AM
I went to a friend's house this weekend (my wife's boss) and she told me that she had some old pictures that she found in her mom's house in a cardboard box. She brought out a basket filled with what looked like about 30 dagguerotype cases. Looking through them I found one actual dagguerotype of a boy. The others were either paper prints that had been put into the case, or they were a glass positive that had been put into the case. Some were tinted (cheeks mostly) and one had a scarlet ink "curtain" added to the right and above the sitter.

So, what are the glass plate positives called? There were two that were probably ambrotypes since they had a real 3D look to them. They were also tinted I think. I don't think she had any tintypes. I'm guessing that most of the paper ones were albumen prints, but I'm not sure how to tell this from a callotype.

All of the cases were dated to before 1859, though the photos were obviously newer. One was of my friend at 7, and several were of her grandmother and her great-aunts, so they had to have come from the 1910s or so. Azo maybe?
Her mother had just taken and put modern pictures into the antique cases.

Anyway, it was very interesting to see some old pictures. The dagguerotype was just beautiful. I can see why people didn't like ambrotypes when they came out.

Thanks,

Will

Kerik
08-07-2006, 12:02 PM
A glass plate positive is an ambrotype. Same thing on blackened tin is a tintype. Both are made with the wet plate collodion process.

Shinnya
08-08-2006, 08:59 AM
Hi,

The way I tell the difference between Calotype/Salt prints and Albument is the smoothness of grains. Albumen prints are usually extremly smooth while salt prints are rather grainy. Also, this trasnlates into smoothness of tones too.

Warmly,
Tsuyoshi

p.s.: There is also something called "Collotype" by the way.




I'm guessing that most of the paper ones were albumen prints, but I'm not sure how to tell this from a callotype.