Finally First Dag!
After months and countless hours of preparation, construction, research, & cash.... I finally have created my first daguerreotype! Back in July 2009 Darcy & I went to Montana and were taught the Becquerel Process of Daguerreotype Photography under the wise instruction of Jerry Spagnoli at the Photograper's Forumulary. Well I have finally put my new knowledge to test here in pittsburgh, and it seems to work. I am very pleased with the final image, Basically I got an image!....Here is my novice understanding of what I initially notice needing improvement for the next plate. (just scratching the surface of improvements) The exposure is correct according to my vision of metering, maybe just barely 1/3 stop too hot, but I would have lost the lower end had I shortened the exposure. The sun popped out through the clouds for about 15 sec during the exposure, burning the woman and wood, I probably should have compensated for that as well. Some guilding issues and/or drying issues, both of which i hope to figure out through more work. Maybe some overdeveloping too... looks a little foggy to me in the bottom dark areas. You can't see the imperfections of the buff in the scanned image, but I do have some scratching caused by the velvetine hand buff.
This photo illustrates the scene for my first dag. You can see the sun is extremely hot on the subject: When I was exposing the plate, the scene was completely in shadow. The day was overcast, but the sun did peek out for about 10 - 15 secs during the exposure. Special thanks to Mark Knobil who's Graflex Camera, Spot Meter, and general understanding of my insanity make this whole process a little smoother.
4/29/2010 01:40:14 am
Way cool!!!!! Andy Warhol is rollin' in his grave!!!!
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This historic process, invented by Jaques Daguerre in 1839, provides a unique depiction of important people, places, and moments in life. After training with Jerry Spagnoli, one of the most notable Daguerreotype artists, we have gained a love and appreciation for this medium that can only be realized by experiencing final pieces in person. This is especially significant due to the hallographic visual quality provided by these artistic representations. The final product is a mirror image of the subject captured on a silver coated copper plate, beautifully enclosed in a case built specifically to display the intended image. Longevity is certainly an asset to this art, as dags have proven to last well beyond 100 years.