Unblinking Eye and APUG: Alternative Processes for Photography
April 27, 2010 2:54 AM   Subscribe

 
Formulas
posted by vostok at 3:40 AM on April 27, 2010


Ahem.
BEFORE ATTEMPTING WETPLATE COLLODION PHOTOGRAPHY, BE SURE TO FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THE CHEMICAL HAZARDS ASSOCIATED WITH THIS PROCESS. SEVERAL CHEMICALS USED IN THE PROCESS ARE EXTREMELY HAZARDOUS, EXTREMELY POISONOUS, CARCINOGENIC, EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE, AND/OR POTENTIALLY EXPLOSIVE.
Etc.

I wouldn't want anyone here to be poisoned, get cancer, burst into flames, and then blow up without fair warning. Not unless the shot was really worth it, of course.

But are any of these alternative processes generally safe and cheap enough to have big fun with? For example, is there anything you could use to paint on to a wall (in the dark), expose the wall to a projected image, apply some fixer to the wall, and end up with the image on the wall?
posted by pracowity at 4:07 AM on April 27, 2010


pracowity: yes, you can buy liquid light which is basically a liquid silver emulsion.
posted by polyglot at 5:10 AM on April 27, 2010


APUGger here - the forum is great if you want technical information on analogue photography. Has some nice participatory things too like a postcard exchange (print 50 under your enlarger, send 'em out and get 50 back every 3mo), but there is a weirdly defensive/reactionary anti-digital luddite streak in the place.
posted by polyglot at 5:13 AM on April 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


there is a weirdly defensive/reactionary anti-digital luddite streak in the place.

The group's main page says: APUG.ORG is an international community of like minded individuals devoted to traditional (non-digital) photographic processes.

These are people making pictures by working in the dark with strange concoctions and odd mechanical contraptions and nearly forgotten methods and lots of home ingenuity. I would imagine they react to mention of digital photography the way people at a meeting of craft-it-yourself longbowmen would react to some jerk pulling out a laser-sighted sniper rifle.
posted by pracowity at 7:23 AM on April 27, 2010


But are any of these alternative processes generally safe and cheap enough to have big fun with?

If you get an Ektachrome slide developing kit, which only requires a film spool to process, you can double or halve the timings for different chemicals and get some whack effects. Reducing the bleaching step gives an effect much like Mordan├žage, only in color.

You can experiment randomly, or with some study, at corrupting the chemistry with various ingredients. The developer has components that control contrast, and color saturation. It's been a while, I forget the chemical components, (sitracylic acid? may be the contrast control.)

Slide processing is still a bit toxic. I don't know if Sprint Chemistry is still around, they had a system where various by-products could be combined to neutralize each other. Don't let color chemistry sit in your drain pipes without flushing it, don't ever put your bare hands in the chemistry, and ventilate.
posted by StickyCarpet at 8:10 AM on April 27, 2010


I would imagine they react to mention of digital photography the way people at a meeting of craft-it-yourself longbowmen would react to some jerk pulling out a laser-sighted sniper rifle.


I came across after I posted Laptopograms in Projects and someone sent me a link to it. I would like to see more of what happens at the interstices of the two domains.
posted by vostok at 8:28 AM on April 27, 2010


Hey be careful with Liquid Light. I damn near poisoned myself with that stuff. Ventilation, ventilation, ventilation.
posted by lumpenprole at 9:23 AM on April 27, 2010


I've been seriously itching to try carbon printing. The itch is seriously started to need to be scratched.
posted by Bovine Love at 1:50 PM on April 27, 2010


Are you sure you didn't get any on you?
posted by pracowity at 10:58 PM on April 27, 2010


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