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Thread: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

  1. #111

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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    They look like they were overexposed and/or overdeveloped. It's hard to tell which. When you get a plate like that you are close, but try cutting the exposure by about a stop or so. Make sure you have restrainer in your developer in hot weather, don't leave the plate in too long, you it will "blow out" and look flat. They'll look better when varnished, if you use Sandarac. If synthetic, they don't darken much at all.

  2. #112
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    I kept development to 15s without exception. Exposure may be the issue, or could it be fixer?
    I did leave these in fixer for about 10 minutes, and they didn't look this flat when they were first fixed.
    Thanks

  3. #113
    Foamer
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Quote Originally Posted by Ari View Post
    I kept development to 15s without exception. Exposure may be the issue, or could it be fixer?
    I did leave these in fixer for about 10 minutes, and they didn't look this flat when they were first fixed.
    Thanks

    I typically leave the tins in fixer for about twice the time it takes for the blue to clear away. Leaving them in too long does seem to hurt the image. I would guess about 3-4 minutes tops for me.


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  4. #114
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Right.
    Just read in Quinn's book: wait for the image to clear completely, count to five, remove the plate from the fixer, and into water.
    This is probably why the image looked great at first, but has now withered away into a flat gray soup.
    Lesson learned!

  5. #115

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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Quinn is probably referring to KCN fixer, which is usually done in about 25 seconds. If you are using Hypo, I've never had fixing wash out an image, and have left them in accidentally for 30 min or so. I usually let a little blue remain on a drip edge where it's thick though. I'd say that requires about 2-3 minutes of time.

    You likely overexposed it. Unless you were using KCN, then possibly the fixer did it.

  6. #116
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    I don't use KCN, so over-exposure is the culprit.
    Thing is, it looked much better after it cleared and the next day, it had faded to this.
    Look at the difference in the two photos taken of the flowers.
    I took the first one when it had just cleared, and the second one the next day after washing and drying.

  7. #117
    Mark Sawyer's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Quote Originally Posted by Ari View Post
    I took the first one when it had just cleared, and the second one the next day after washing and drying.
    Tintypes change considerably between wet and dry. Just as silver gelatin paper prints dry down (darker), tintypes dry up, (lighter). Part of the challenge is looking at the still-wet tintype and predicting how it will look dry.
    "I love my Verito lens, but I always have to sharpen everything in Photoshop..."

  8. #118
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Sawyer View Post
    Tintypes change considerably between wet and dry. Just as silver gelatin paper prints dry down (darker), tintypes dry up, (lighter). Part of the challenge is looking at the still-wet tintype and predicting how it will look dry.
    My other plates may have dried up by 5% or hardly at all.
    What’s surprising about this one is it’s dried up by 30%, maybe more.
    The other plate I did 10 minutes later lightened much less as well.

  9. #119

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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Apples to oranges. You took a photo of the plates when wet. White balance and exposure settings based on that camera.
    Then you scanned the plates when dry. You need to adjust the scan settings and post processing contrast settings, scanners have a lot of trouble with shiny silver nitrate on metal.
    When you varnish the plates, do us a favor and take a photo with the same camera used before, with the same lighting. I have a hunch it will look about like this one, I've adjusted:


  10. #120
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Plate - A Beginner's Experience

    Will do. Thanks, guys.

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