Printing

Some of our Followers, know that based upon a few events in 2016 with people stating things such as they didn’t know how to fold a Canvas tent, or with one person insulting me, by stating “nice props” while referring  to my camera’s , I’ve been working on a folder, that explains in details while providing provenance on everything that we use within our camp.

with the information that I’ve been writing, I’ll be adding that info to our website, while allowing me to expanded the information about some of our antiques, that due to their nature, are typically not carried with us to a civil war event.

this is the page  used in the finishing/studio portion of the binder and is specifically about printing.

 

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top frame is an 1880’s Anthony printing out frame

The concept of forming images on paper using silver halides and the sun lead to some of earliest developments towards taking successful photos. And bringing with it idea of using negative images to effectively reproduce a print. This allowed grater flexibility over the daguerreotype process, which is considered a developed out positive image, which could not be easily reproduced.  In 1841 Henry Fox Talbot introduced the Calotype or talbotype a Developed Out Paper negative and, as we call it fixing which prevents the silver from continually blackening, an issue that Thomas Wedgwood and Nicéphore (Felix) Niépce had encounter in earlier experiments. Henry Fox Talbot was then able to print his negative on paper that had been coated with table salt and silver nitrate, creating what’s simply called Salted Paper, a printing out paper. This printing process was commonly done through the use of a contact printing frame, similar to the two pictured above.  Shorty after, Henry Fox Talbot introduced the Carbon print, while in 1847 Louis Désiré Blanquart-Evrard introduced the Albumen print, which became the most popular form of prints thought the 19th century, as exemplified through stereoviews, cabinet cards and CDV’s.

As techniques of printing advanced, the presentation of the complete photo advanced. And with it creating an almost separate set of professions within the photographic industry. Such as colorist and touchup artist, print artist, artist making frames and cases, separating the photographer, by the Civil War. Studios and producers of photographic supplies, such as E. & H. T. Anthony, hired any number of people who specialized in those aforementioned aspects.

Today, within the photographic industry, there are still specific artist who specialize, in taking the photo, touching it up, printing it, then presenting it. Battle Born Historical Photography, attempts to create the element of a 19th and early 20th century photographic artisans and studio, thus we will often print and mount our own photo’s utilizing different types of paper and techniques forgotten by the digital age.

Silver Gelatin Process

 

The Silver Gelatin process, is an evolution from whats historically called the dry Collodion process, or simply the dry plate. I haven’t made or used any dry-plates, instead I tend to use film with some of my dry plate cameras. The Silver Gelatin process is used to create modern film and Develop Out Paper or simply DOP as compared Printing Out Paper, or POP. The most Common forms of POP  are identified by the binding agent used, such as Albumen or Salt.

It’s important to note, That when I state that when I’ve identified a print as an Albumen, Salt or Silver Gelatin Paper, That these, are hand done prints that have been manipulated via hand process appropriate to the specific process, Then scanned they are not digitally manipulated.  to obtain a print, I use film or glass negatives created through the wet collodion process. The featured image of the Golden Gate Bridge was taken on film using an Kodak Ektar 127mm lens, with our 4×5 Ansco Universal, and has been printed on Silver Gelatin Paper.  I’m stating this information to hopefully prevent confusion between, can be considered as a Digital Pigment Print or DPP. This is also why historical type prints cost more, than a digital print from my Zenfolio page

 

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Silver Gelatin Print from a Wet Collodion Negative 

History of the Silver Gelatin Process:

 

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Dry Plates and Silver Gelatin paper from the turn of the Century

The Silver gelatin process is the photographic process used with currently available black-and-white films and printing papers.

The silver gelatin process was introduced by Richard Leach Maddox in 1871 with subsequent considerable improvements in sensitivity obtained by Charles Harper Bennett in 1878.

Silver gelatin print paper was made as early as 1874 on a commercial basis, but it was poor quality because the dry-plate emulsion was coated onto the paper only as an afterthought. Coating machines for the production of continuous rolls of sensitized paper were in use by the mid-1880s, though widespread adoption of silver gelatin print materials did not occur until the 1890s. The earliest papers had no baryta layer, and it was not until the 1890s that baryta coating became a commercial operation, first in Germany, in 1894, and then taken up by Kodak by 1900.

Although the baryta layer plays an important part in the manufacture of smooth and glossy prints, the baryta paper of the 1890s did not produce the lustrous or glossy print surface that became the standard for fine art photography in the twentieth century. Matting agents, textured papers, and thin baryta layers that were not heavily calendered produced a low-gloss and textured appearance. The higher gloss papers first became popular in the 1920s and 30s as photography transitioned from pictorialism into modernism, photojournalism, and “straight” photography.

 

 

for many of my prints, I like High Contrast – thus I tend to focus on that effect, this image 35mm-virginia-citywas captured used 35mm film, my preference is medium to large format film, but I do use a 35mm camera as well, and much the same with any film I use, I develop it myself, it was then printed on Silver Gelatin paper.