Alt processes help.
Hi everyone. Firstly I would like to say Hello, Im Hannah and im new. Im a student studying in my final, very scary year of university.
As part of my dissertation I am experimenting with cyanotypes and gum printing, with the later not quite going so well, but I will persevere. 😃
I am also here to ask a very, very big favour from anyone willing to help out, which would include answering some questions that will help with the research needed to write a half decent essay, and as alt processes are hard to find nowadays I would like to come to the people experimenting and loving the processes themselves.
the questions are as follows:
1. What processes have you explored and which is your favourite?
2. Why did you start alternative printing?
3. Although alternative printing is now a niche market, do you think it has a place in todays digital age?
any answers are so greatly appreciated!!
1 -- cyanotype, brown, salt, gum, platinum & palladium, image transfer (Polaroid)...favorite: carbon
2 -- self-expression, the love of the hand-made print, not being tied to the whims of a silver gelatin paper manufacturer
3 -- people with digital cameras or small/medium format cameras, or even tiny 4x5's, can now make enlarged digital negatives, yet produce hand-made prints in many different processes.
At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.
1. Van dyke brown, platinum & palladium a little, Kallitype, gravure many years ago a lot, photo litho (on stones) many years ago. Now I only print kallitypes and carbon transfer.
2. After years of working with gelatin silver prints, I felt something was missing. Now I feel that I am more in control of the process, especially carbon transfer printing. Carbon transfer printing takes my work to a whole different level.
1. hand made emulsion, liquid emulsion, glass+ metal silver gelatin images, cyanotypes, hand painted cyanotypes, silver image making, lumen printing, retina prints,aper negatives ... paper negatives+ liquid emulsions
Originally Posted by Hannahtephoto
2. because i was bored and college ran out of photo classes so i needed to teach myself something
3. using digital materials and technology together with alt process is fun, whats not to like
cyanotype;platinum/palladium;pop colloidion; salt
to cover my butt as the materials we love disappear...having great latitude as far as surfaces go
digital or analog..it's the print that matters..just go for it Hannah!!
oh yes have fun; you are now converging with the sun and the moon and the stars
website down for maintenance!
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What: Polaroid emulsion lifts & transfers, cyanotypes, kallitypes, tintypes, Lith.
Favorite: Palladium process for its nice warmtones.
Why: pt/pd process is really a pleasure to work with in the darkroom. Also some images need the glossy pop of silver gelatin; but some really look better with the smooth tones & hand-made appearance of pt/pd.
Future: In an homogenized age where everything is looking the same, a hand-made print really stands out in a gallery setting when surrounded by inkjet and even silver gelatin prints. I think we're experiencing a time similar to the Arts & Crafts Movement of late 19th century which was a reaction to the machine age (now the digital age). We are exploring the potentials of processes that were used all too briefly in the past (see Lykle Rexar's Antiquarian Avant-Garde).
van Huyck Photo
"Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"
Processes: Platinum/Palladium, Gum bichromate, occasionally others. Platinum/palladium is by far the favorite.
Why: back a number of years ago, there was a big scare that Ilford might go out of business, and Kodak had stopped making black-and-white papers. I didn't want to be beholden to a manufacturer to keep producing images with the tools that I loved using, so I decided to teach myself how to work in alternative processes.
Alt processes may be a "niche market" but if anything it is a booming, growing market. As others have mentioned, it is gaining artistic practice market share in reaction to the over-mechanized, virtualized world of digital photography. I think for a lot of people, having a physical object to hold in their hands (and that they made with them) instead of look at on a computer screen is a very important factor in why they work in alternative processes. The irony in this reaction is that digital technologies make this democratization of alt processes possible - before, you had to shoot large format or make an enlarged wet-process negative to make alt-process prints. Now you can make a digitally enlarged negative from just about anything, even your camera phone, and print away.
wow! thank you all for such great replies! its really good for me to be reading about the passion you guys have about alternative processes and I hope to hear a lot more opinion. It is great to hear from likeminded people that love to create their own prints by hand and want to stand out from the crowd of digital printers that are over taking the craft that had to be used that made photography what it is today. Thank you everyone for taking the time to write down your thoughts and experience for me!
1. Photogenic drawing, VDB, Anthotypes.
Originally Posted by Hannahtephoto
2. Interested in the images they may produce.
3. Of course.
“The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”
Hannah - Are you studying at Norwich University of the Arts by any chance ?
If you are, I can set aside a few hours for coffee and chat.