That I don´t often get too impressed by photography that I see. But this is just wonderful. I think! 😀 Pelle
Timeless tintypes of the world’s most photographed subjects
At Sundance Film Festival, photographer Victoria Will had just minutes with some of Hollywood’s most famous actors and directors — arguably, some of the most photographed people in the world — but she chose a process that at its core is imperfect: tintype.
The 19th century wet-plate photography process predates film. There are no negatives, no large digital files or multiple frames, and no do-overs. Each image is one of a kind.
It starts in the darkroom, where each plate must be coated by hand with light sensitive emulsion. The exposure starts with a comically blinding amount of light, which is reflected off the subject into the camera lens and onto the aluminum plate still wet with emulsion. Any dry patches will remain undeveloped. It is an unforgiving medium. It also makes each image undeniably unique.
“I love that when you make a tintype you are making a thing, a physical photographic object — one that you can hold and experience in a different way,” Will told In Sight. “But I also love the finicky nature of the chemistry. Each plate is one of a kind. In the digital age these two aspects of the medium really inspire me.”
On one of the last pages of the book is a quote from Walker Evans: “The eye traffics in feelings, not in thoughts.” When asked, Will said it sums up what she loves and why she is so drawn to photography. “A successful image for me is one that makes you feel. It needs to touch you in some way,” she said. “I think unconsciously, and clearly articulated by Evans here, photographers are moved by emotion. That’s what is actually pushing the shutter.”