Wet Plate: A Potted History

On Mark Tucker‘s blog, I’ve just stumbled across a potted history of the wet plate collodion process by George Eastman House.

The original work of the 1850s is often so beautiful. Some of it is shown in their short video, not least a stunning glass negative of an American steam locomotive.

During the commentary, the narrator mentions one of the aspects that I love about wet plate — that each one has a narrative derived from the very hand of the photographer. Every part of a wet plate tells a story in some way, whether it’s to do with the content or the process.

Lovely to see the famous image of Roger Fenton’s Photographic Van featured too.

Anyway, enjoy a few moments with this…

Animated Chopin

I love a bit of piano, in particular at the moment Debussy and Chopin.

As if the score isn’t beautiful enough, here is Chopin’s Nocturne in E-flat Major, Opus 9, No.2 performed and animated by Stephen Malinowski.

Make sure you see it right towards the end as the music simplifies with glorious delicate flourishes…

Silver and Light Revisited

Back in December, I saw out the year with a short film showing the extraordinary working methods of Ian Ruhter.

I’ve enjoyed watching it again recently as it has a new relevance for me.

Whether or not you’ve seen it already, I really recommend making the time. It’s a cracker and a gentle reminder of what photography really is…

“There is a point in every person’s life when they must choose to follow their dreams or be stuck in the life they fear.” — Ian Ruhter

If, like me, you’re a fan of Tumblr, Ian Ruhter’s feed is a good’un too…

Mercedes: Poultry in Motion…?

A little treat for the weekend…

This video for Mercedes has been doing the rounds recently.

In essence, it highlights how cars will never be as good as nature’s finest chickens…

Be My Valentine…

Video

I’m not generally one to eulogise about equipment.

Earlier in the week, however, I met the Leica M Monochrom fitted with a Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 lens and fell in love…

Never handled a Leica? I recommend it.

If, like me, you haven’t for a while then it might be time to visit your nearest purveyor of fine cameras, refresh your memory and dare to dream…

Leica M Monochrom

Behold the hand-built lenses…

The Jazz Café, Newcastle’s Parisian Corner

Video

Following on from my post last week, you are now among the first to be able to view Duncan Davis’ tribute to his old mate of 35 years, Keith Crombie.

Last Monday, Newcastle came to a standstill as Keith’s friends joined him on his last journey from Pink Lane, through the city centre — a tiny bit of which he transformed into his own corner of Paris, the Jazz Café.

Perched 130ft atop Grey’s Monument in the icy weather, I was honoured to be able to help Duncan film the extraordinary funeral procession.

So, it’s Sunday morning…time to pour your favourite hot beverage, take your seat at the Jazz Café and settle down to enjoy Duncan’s tribute to a Newcastle legend.

 

Hunter S. Thompson: The Edge

Video

“The Edge… There is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over. The others — the living — are those who pushed their luck as far as they felt they could handle it, and then pulled back, or slowed down, or did whatever they had to when it came time to choose between Now and Later.” — Hunter S. Thompson

I know what he means and I expect many of you do too…

This fine short by Piotr Kabat came to me via the superb brain pickings.