Archive for May, 2022

Wednesday, May 18th, 2022

Inspired Series – Henrik Brahe and Gerhad Sokol

My inspired series is going on slowly, but for sure I captured wonderful people on metal plates. First you see Henrik Brahe. An archaeologist and photographer from Portugal. He brought me a wonderful book of his work. Find out more about him at http://henrikbrahe.com He visited with his beautiful wife Sanne. I could not resist to capture them together as well.

Gerhard Sokol is a well know photographer who captured history with his work. But after all these years in photography, he did not stop there, he went on to work with lots of different techniques. He also published a book recently that tis worth to buy. you can find his work and book on https://www.bilderges.at

More information about the Book (with beautiful prints and stories) and the Inspired Series: http://inspired.mhaustria.com

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  • Find all the tools I use here : http://list.mhaustria.com

  • Looking for wet plate gear? http://gear.mhaustria.com

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    Thursday, May 12th, 2022

    Growing Together – World Wet Plate Day 2022

    I decided to participate this year for the world wet plate day. I discussed it with my girlfriend and she was the one who came up with the idea. First we thought to make it in one shot, but I couldn’t wrap the outcome into my mind because of the limited depth of field. So I came up with the double exposure solution. I was pretty happy with the outcome, but thought I could improve it a bit -> that was not my best idea (happy I did a scan before that). As you can see in the video, I got also unlucky with the varnish. So I am working right now on that to fix it. I will write about my result here on ma Patron page, you can support me and join here: Become a Patron!

    Growing Together 18x24cm collodion wet plate – Zeiss Tessar 300mm
    this is how we positioned each other.

  • Get yourself a beautiful print here: http://prints.mhaustria.com

  • Find all the tools I use here : http://list.mhaustria.com

  • Looking for wet plate gear? http://gear.mhaustria.com

  • Buy me a tea: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/mhaustria

  • Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/mhaustria

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    Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

    Building a Wet Plate Frankenstein Camera and Capture a Ghost

    Corrine of www.corrinewestmedia.co.uk booked a wet plate workshop before the pandemic started. Two years later we were finally able to do it. The main subject was to get comfortable with the wet collodion process and to create images similar to the ones of spirit photographer William H. Mumler. Mr. Mumler created images (probably double exposures) where his clients could take a picture with their deceased relatives. The photograph of Mary Todd Lincoln with the “ghost” of her husband (Abraham Lincoln) was his most famous one. Corrine found my double exposure wet plates and that was the reason she contacted me in the first place. About two months before the workshop Corrine surprised me with a question: “Can we build a wet plate camera together?”. I talked with a friend and after a long visit at a DIY market I was sure that we can do it. A DIY Camera and capturing ghosts, that sounds like a fun workshop for me 🙂

    I could not capture everything in the video, because I was focused to deliver a great workshop experience. So let me explain a bit here. I build a diy camera kit so to say. But I did not want to build everything. It was important for me that we put the major parts together in person, to really create a camera and an understanding how a camera works.

    the camera kit

    It took me a long time to figure everything out, I wanted to create a diy camera, that is adaptable and upgradeable without any special parts. It also should be able to shoot portraits and landscape and if something breaks, just go to your diy marked and get a replacement part. The only thing needed is my self designed camera back. I wanted to invent/adapt something that you can get in the market, but I was without luck finding such a part. The 3D printed design took many hours and a lot of filament to work as expected.

    The first prototype of the camera back with an international film holder

    For the lens I went for a 150mm Leitz Dimaron (F2.8), Elmaron (F2.8) or Hektor (F2.5). These lenses have three things in common. 150mm is kind of a “normal” lens for the 4×5 large format and they all have the same diameter and not too expensive if you buy them online. All of them are pretty sharp as well as you could see in the video (this was a Dimaron)

    one lens mount, lots of options without breaking the bank

    The camera and lens support is build like this one in that posting: Camera and Lens support

    For the Film/Plate holder I decided to go for the std international 4×5 holders. I had them water jet cut for a clean look and we modified it with silver wires, because these are more resistant against acid and fit into the silver nitrate workflow

    std 4×5 film holder modified for the wet collodion process

    We were super happy with our first result. The portrait looked awesome and the resolution of the lens is great. When you look closely at the video you will see, that we used two boxes for portrait distance.

    the ground worked also great – here is a explanation how we did it
    https://blog.markus-hofstaetter.at/2019/12/ho-to-make-a-ground-glass-for-a-large-format-camera/
    For me it’s always exciting to see my idea come to life.

    Here is a detail scan of Corrine’s eye – pretty impressive result of a 4×5 plate shot with a self made camera and a projection lens.

    a scan of Corrine’s eye with my Screen Cezanne Scanner

    For the spirit photographs that are inspired by Mr. Mumler we wend for wet plate double exposures.
    To make our live easier, we marked all positions with sticky tape on the ground.

    tape is always your friend for any photography project

    We decided to use my Dallmeyer 3B Petzval lens for the first double exposure, because it fits better to the time when the original images were captured.

    William H. Mumler. inspired wet plate double exposure

    The second double exposure was a bit more modern, but also should get the ghost look. For that we used a Zeiss 300mm F4.5 Tessar lens. This lens is pretty new (about 2ß-30 years old) and is very crisp. I thought that makes more sense for this kind of image and also fits to the story (see caption of the image)

    Profession – Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow An image about photography has changed

    What a great 3 Day workshop that was. We created so many different portraits. (more in the gallery) and time flew so fast. At this point I want to say thanks again to Corrine for visiting my workshop and trusting me with the camera design. I looking forward to see what she will do for her PHD with the wet collodion process.

  • Get yourself a beautiful print here: http://prints.mhaustria.com

  • Find all the tools I use here : http://list.mhaustria.com

  • Looking for wet plate gear? http://gear.mhaustria.com

  • Buy me a tea: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/mhaustria

  • Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/mhaustria

  • Get cool analog shirts here http://shirts.mhaustria.com
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