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  1. #1
    dwross's Avatar
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    Art Critics Discover Dry Plate!

    Hi All,

    Congratulations to Tony Zinnanti! Tony has been working with dry plate emulsions in California and carried his vision through to artistic success.

    http://www.the-signal.com/news/article/21016/
    and
    http://zinnanti.net/index.php?option...d=47&Itemid=66

    Tony has been working with Kevin Klein's recipe from The Light Farm (http://www.thelightfarm.com/Map/DryP...PlatePart3.htm), adding his own research and craftsmanship to the process. He is making a beautiful, consistently ASA 2 emulsion. Tony will be writing an article about his work soon, but one tip he can pass along right now is to chill 1:1 Dektol to 46-50F and use minimal agitation during a three minute development time.

    d

  2. #2

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    Congratulations, Tony! I look forward to seeing your article.
    Kirk

    For up from the ashes, up from the ashes, grow the roses of success!

  3. #3

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    Hi Tony,
    Very nice! Question: Since the prints are larger than the camera, they were obviously made with an enlarger. Are you using Kevin's emulsion in camera, or as a paper emulsion,or both? Excuse me if the answere is in the links and I missed it.
    Bill

  4. #4
    Jeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwross View Post
    Tony has been working with dry plate emulsions in California and carried his vision through to artistic success.
    Great news and congrats to Tony, but I wish the article was more about the art and less about how it was made.

    The process can be one of a multitude and still have similar or the same results (and it doesn't matter whatsoever what camera he used!), but it's the photographer who is integral in the creation of the art. The article just talks about him using dry plate and a 100-year old camera as if those are the sole reason for the show.
    Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!

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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    Great news and congrats to Tony, but I wish the article was more about the art and less about how it was made.

    The process can be one of a multitude and still have similar or the same results (and it doesn't matter whatsoever what camera he used!), but it's the photographer who is integral in the creation of the art. The article just talks about him using dry plate and a 100-year old camera as if those are the sole reason for the show.
    You are kidding yourself if you think the process to create art isn't as important as the art itself. Part of the attraction of art is it's rarity- humans love rare things. Anything that makes a piece of art more rare increases it's value. Dry plate is rare and unusual and thus makes it more interesting.

  6. #6
    Jeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by domaz View Post
    You are kidding yourself if you think the process to create art isn't as important as the art itself. Part of the attraction of art is it's rarity- humans love rare things. Anything that makes a piece of art more rare increases it's value. Dry plate is rare and unusual and thus makes it more interesting.
    You are kidding yourself if you think the value placed on the craft is higher than that of the craftsman.

    So you're saying these photographs are not as good artistically had they been made on factory-made silver gelatin film and printed in a series of 1000 with photogravure? Or if they had been shot digitally and printed with an inkjet?

    Your first sentence deals with what is important in art and the rest a rant on values and rarity, which are 2 different topics. Rarity and value are marketplace considerations which don't enter into the artistic process for me as I don't make art with the marketplace in mind. As to the process of artistic creation, this has been proven time and again to only be important to those who place importance on the process (Andy Warhol, Christopher Jordan, Helmut Newton, etc all worked in ways which remove them from the process at some point, but the marketplace does not care). There is nothing wrong with this and I place a high level of importance on my devotion to my craft, but I don't delude myself into thinking someone else cares how long it took me to pre-soak my paper for proper acidification before coating it in pt/pd.

    Edit: My initial post is based on Tony getting the media coverage for how he did it and not what he created, which is where the credit should be given.
    Last edited by Jeremy; 12-02-2009 at 12:36 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!

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  7. #7

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    Not to start a urinating competition, but if the final product is all that matters - I've got some really outstanding shots from my Canon 20D, far better than anything I can reproduce (yet) with my eastman No.1 View. Would you recommend I post them to the critique gallery?

    I think the process is important. I think that the process is what gives the final product - the silver gleatin, wet-plate, kodachrome, colloidoin, and all the other things everyone is trying so desperately to preserve here --it's "thingness". The problem with so much "art" these days is that it's lost its tactile qualities.

    I can browse flickr all day long and see things taken with camera phones that are goregeous, but I'd much rather hold an over developed contact print my buddy made 15 years ago in a hall - closet - darkroom because the art is in the object - and the object is neccesarily the result of the underlying process.

    Now that I've outted myself as a digital photographer i'll probably be banned from the forum all together.

    On the otherhand, my last 6 months of photographic expenditures consist completely of gear made long before I was born and chemicals, so perhaps I'll be spared banishment because I'm starting to see the light (through a ground glass)

  8. #8
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    When my palate gets dry, I find a nice local IPA re-wets it in a pleasant fashion, but I can't claim it is art.

    Whoops, its plate, not palate....never mind.

    Jeremy...relax and have a cold one.

    Vaughn

    PS...thanks for the news/link, Denise!
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  9. #9

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    "Philosophy on this Forum?!
    Now I have seen it all! As for me,I am happy if I make one finished piece of "art" in a whole year. Thats working on it everyday. For me, process IS the art and its value. I apologize to no one about my lack of "prolification" (is that a word?).
    My desire is to be able to produce,in real matter, the images that I see when I "pre-visualize" Also That I "make" every phase of the process. Or if I cannot "make" it, to at least understand each step of the process. I am no student of electronics. Therefor I do not use digital anything in my work.
    Bill

  10. #10
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    Hey Bugman! It is all one process to me, too...from loading the film holders to framing the final print. Perhaps one day I will extend my process to include making the film (dry plate). The image is only part of the process.

    But it sounds like I will have to take a sleeping bag with me into the redwoods while I wait for the ASA 2 plate to get enough exposure!

    Vaughn
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

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