Well, I got some glassware together and had my chemistry in order, so I made my varnish last night. What a pain in the ass! Gum sandarac takes forever to dissolve - I spent over an hour and a half stirring it in alcohol to get it dissolved. Of course, this also involved filtering the varnish almost a dozen times to get all the debris out - gum sandarac is a natural resin from a tree, and it gets bark and dirt and sometimes even insects trapped in it that all have to be filtered out before you
This morning the postman dropped of a package. It turned out to be Christopher James book in the new second edition. I imidiatly started reading this book. This is a very inspiring book, and I am going to explore it much more in the near future. It is a book that is hard to put down again. It is so inspiring and easy to read. Only problem is finding the time to test all the things mentioned in the book. I have been flipping back and forth in the book and reading whatever seemed interesting.
Gosh, I think the biggest hurdle to starting in to wet plate is all the different places you need to order the stuff from in order to start shooting. I'll try to run down the list -
www.artcraftchemicals.com (silver nitrate, cadmium bromide, ferrous sulfate, ammonium iodide, Gum Sandarac)
www.chemsavers.com (ethyl ether and glacial acetic acid)
Our local photo club is now offically homeless - it was no longer a good idea to rent a permanent place since none of the facilities (studio, darkroom) were used a lot by the members. We auctioned off all the gear that was saleable and junked the rest.
In a sense it is a relief. Too much energy has - in my mind - been spent fighting a battle we simply could not win.
From now on we will focus on more important activities like: Showing and critiquing pictures, excursions,
I have around 8 rolls to develop. Trying to do 2 per day! My darkroom is occupied by the fridge right now, as we are renovating the kitchen.