physautotype my first go
This is an utter swine to photograph well but it's actually quite detailed. I think I overexposed this one. I made a nice enlarged positive from this picture http://www.flickr.com/photos/fishies...7600504224851/
and using Howard Efner's post on the Bostick & Sullivan forums, I used about 1 gram of violin rosin (student grade £1.99) and dissolved it in 100ml Methylated Spirit (purple, bought from ironmongers for £2.39). I used about 2ml poured onto a clean, dry piece of 4x6inch glass (from a clip frame, surprisingly nice milled edges too! 4pack of clip frames £1.99) and let it dry overnight. Then I put my enlarged positive on top of the plate with some mylar (from some christmas packaging a few years ago)between the positive and the plate to help prevent sticking (and it did get sticky/tacky). Put it under my philips facial tanner for 5.5 hours, took it out, noticed there was a bit of a ghost image on it. Made a little "fume box" out of a tupperware-type box, some bits of cardboard tubing as plate supports and a glass ashtray of white spirit in the middle of the 4 plate supports. Developed it for about 20minutes, although i didn't see much change after 5 minutes.
It just looks like a piece of frosted glass if it's sitting on a table but once you pick it up and hold it up to the light, it's amazing. The rosin particles scatter the light so if you hold it right up to a light, you get a shimmery rainbow effect (and a negative image. to view the positive image you hold the plate at an angle and have a dark-ish background to view it through).
This is a really simple, albeit a bit long on the exposure times, process and there really should be more people out there playing with this! The materials are so readily available especially if you're as lucky as me and have a musical instrument shop within walking distance. There's a few things I want to fiddle with... I think I have slightly too much rosin in my mixture because my scales can't accurately weigh 1g, I need to learn how to coat plates a bit better, need to try to do less exposure time, etc, but I still have another 3 pieces of glass to do all that with.
Can't tell I'm excited about this stuff, huh?