A Pinch of Salt: Alternative Process Photography

In opposition to the age of digital reproduction many photographers are looking back in time for inspiration and reviving early 19th century photography processes. These traditional processes which included salt prints, wet plate collodion prints, cyanotypes, daguerreotypes, albumen prints, palladium prints and others were extremely labor intensive with a low percentage of success; therefore quickly died out in favor of film. The return to these early processes, however, is no surprise as we have become accustomed to film and digital photography and yearn to see something different. Alternative process photography is undeniably beautiful both in its imperfections and in its dark, mysterious appearance.

Wet Plate Collodion 

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Sally Mann, Body Farm, 2000 – 2001

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Sally Mann, Proud Flesh, 2003 – 2009

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Sally Mann, Southern Landscapes: Georgia, 1996

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Sally Mann, Southern Landscapes: Georgia, 1996  {Sally Mann}

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Joni Sternbach, Broken Bridge, Shelter Island, 6.5 x 8.5in

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Joni Sternbach, Ferragudo, Portugal, 8 x 20 in  {Joni Sternbach}

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Jody Ake Photography, Still Life  {Jody Ake}

Palladium Print

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Roger Matsumoto, The Meeting, palladium print on watercolor paper, 22 x 28 in

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Roger Matsumoto, Mallow, palladium print on watercolor paper, 16 x 20 in

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Roger Matsumoto, Seed Pods, palladium print on watercolor paper, 22 x 28 in {Shear Arts}

Cyanotype

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Anna Atkins (1799 – 1871) English botanist and photographer

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Anna Atkins (1799 – 1871) English botanist and photographer

Salt Prints

Magnolia-on-Salt

Holger Drallmeyer, “Magnolias,” 2013

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These last three salt prints were printed by myself in an alternative process photography class from photos I took while visiting Savannah, Georgia.

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One comment on “A Pinch of Salt: Alternative Process Photography

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