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  1. #1
    tomalophicon's Avatar
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    Who trains the future film chemists?

    Will there be another generation of engineers and chemists who specialise in photographic emulsions? How do these people train? Are there apprenticeships?
    I wonder if anyone will be interested in this line of work in the near future.

    The recent pile of threads about film's demise have made me depressed to the point where I have to post my own

  2. #2

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    We have just taken on 2 new apprentices, to join the 3 that joined us year before last and who are doing very, very well.

    They are engineering 'craft' and they are working in M14 the main coating machine and elsewhere as well as continuing their studies at college.

    Chemistry graduates are about, but they need further training before becoming emulsion chemists.

    Simon ILFORD Photo / HARMAN technology LImited :

  3. #3
    Steve Smith's Avatar
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    Who trained the first emulsion chemists? No one, they learned by trial and error (probably lots of error). If there is ever a need for lots more emulsion chemists, they will appear.

    On the subject of trial and error, Edwin Land (Polaroid) didn't like to find a solution immrdiately. He liked to have lots of errors so he knew the process inside out. If you come up with an instant solution, you don't the the variables and limits of your process.

    I tend to specialise in the error side of things!



    Steve.

  4. #4
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    I'm trying to do it, and do it from the modern and older perspective, but there are few people interested in this craft. And, fewer still interested in teaching it. Many people don't even want to discuss it.

    PE

  5. #5
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    My first thought was...Photo Engineer, Ron Mowrey!

    8 people just got a crash course in emulsion making 2 weeks ago at the George Eastman House (GEH) and each one of us could probably comfortably do it by ourselves now. I'll admit, I didn't take this class because I immediately wanted to go home and make some prints, but rather to learn it while someone with the expetise is willing to share it!

    Ron is one of very few emulsion evangelists.

    Though, I know there are people Australia that are working on some pretty exciting things when it comes to emulsions.
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  6. #6

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    For $48 they can get up to date 2007:
    http://www.ingentaconnect.com/conten...00002/art00001

  7. #7
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Tadeki Tani has written some excellent books and articles on emulsion science. They are at a very low level concerning the mechanisms and involve a lot of physical chemistry. They do NOT teach you how to make an emulsion. Bob Shanebrook's book is an excellent inside look at film making at Kodak but it does NOT teach you how to make the film, the emulsion, the dispersions for color, nor does it teach you how to make the coatings.

    So, there are gaping holes in our knowledge.

    One of the things that I pointed out in the GEH workshop was the fact that there are NO modern descriptions of emulsion making and NO existing book is free of blatant errors. I handed out examples and discussed the pitfalls in the existing literature. This means that you cannot duplicate almost all published formulas due to errors or omissions.

    PE

  8. #8
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by holmburgers View Post
    My first thought was...Photo Engineer, Ron Mowrey!
    Mine too!
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  9. #9
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    But then, explain how. One or two workshops a year will not do. Books and DVDs will not do.

    PE

  10. #10
    tomalophicon's Avatar
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    Surely Kodak trains apprentices as Ilford does. How about Foma or the others?

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