Even though digital photography is still fairly new, there has already been a small resurgence in film photography. Recent movements such as Lomography and The Impossible Project have kept film flowing through the younger generations, while a great deal of the older generation has never converted to digital. So you may not be surprised to hear that film is still alive and going. But you may be surprised to hear that there has been a resurgence in wet plate photography. In the video, photographer Ellen Susan discusses the history of wet collodion photography, contemporary artists using the process, and how you can get started in wet plate photography yourself:
Wet plate collodion photography is not for the impatient. The process of making photos with wet plates is very time consuming and, basically, really inconvenient compared to modern technologies. So why would anyone want to take photos with this technique? Susan says it’s more about the process and less about the subject. Wet plate photos have a particular style to them which can’t be reproduced (except, perhaps, for a great deal of digital post-processing).
“There are two ways that the process is being used now. One is for the detail and the beauty and the perfection, and the other one is the exploitation of the process artifacts and making the process almost the subject of the photograph.”