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Mark Sink photography

2009-10-02 20:54:49.352144+00 by Dan Lyke 6 comments

Continuing the large format and different processes discussion with CJ, Mark Sink does wet plate photography.

[ related topics: Photography Community ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2009-10-03 15:38:21.670577+00 by: petronius

I remember many years ago when a friend of mine bought a book that detailed many obsolete photgraphic techniques, like albumen photos or platinotypes . There are artists who pursue these methods, like mad scientists in their laboratory. What worrys me is not that such dedicated people will stop pursuing these methods to acheive unique goals. Its a bit like early music scholars who learn how to use a sackbut. My worry is that there are a lot of people who want to explore older techniques with a bit less dedication, who are put out of the market by the inrush of digital.

I met a teenager a few years ago who had set up a darkroom in his closet, and was getting very avid in doing his own printing. He complained that it was getting harder to find paper and chemicals, and he might have to give up the pursuit. To me this is like somebody giving up painting with oils because they don't make them much anymore. You can do amazing stuff in the digital realm, but it isn't the same as manipulating the development process by hand, or painting in a medium that lets you revise for even a few days after first laying on the paint.

#Comment Re: Processes made: 2009-10-04 11:44:54.58521+00 by: Chris in Florida

Digital photography is a wonderful thing in it's own way, it enables the average person who doesn't want to engage in the hands on required of the "traditional" way of developing and printing to achieve results that previously were attainable only by the very knowledgeable. And.........here comes the "but...." There ARE those who have a love and reverence for Processes now considered outdated, exotic and time consuming, I am one of those, maybe an analogy could be made to the Slow Food Movement. Photography has always been technology based, any particular method is but a means to an end, and there is room in the tent for everybody, I salute anyone who gets off their ass and is making an effort and doing something. There world for me is a more interesting place because of die-hards like Mark Sink who are keeping some of the old magic alive. I love the smell of Fixer in the morning! CJ

#Comment Re: Availability of Darkroom Supplies made: 2009-10-04 16:32:19.98235+00 by: Chris in Florida

There is no shortage of places to get the necessary supplies for the darkroom, those living in some areas may have to resort to mail order/online to get the stuff, but film and chemistry based printing is alive and well. Here are a couple, check em out, wonderful range of stuff:



and here is a site devoted to analog/film based photography, the forums are great places to encounter some that are doing and a wealth of knowledge on many related topics.


#Comment Re: made: 2009-10-04 17:59:00.475702+00 by: petronius

Good point about internet sources for film and such. Of course, Kodak has stopped making Kodachrome and slide projectors, so people interested in those formats will end up fighting over the remaining supplies. I suppose Kodak could let other people make the stuff for a small specialty market, but the economics are based on mass production. I might also point out that my young friend was having trouble finding chemicals in St. Louis, not some rural hamlet. There are always products easier to find in New York, Chicago or LA, but the loss of the mass market seems to have ruined all markets for these products.

Did this problem happen in the early 20th century, with anything? We lost widespread use of horses, but the simulateous loss of horseshit may have compensated. Yes, somebody always laments changes, but can anybody think of arts or crafts that have just vanished in the past, before the digtal era?

#Comment Re: made: 2009-10-07 06:07:57.329273+00 by: Linus Akesson

petronius: I guess portrait painting was once obsoleted by photography, and manual monk-and-parchment book copying by the printing press.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-10-07 14:32:24.91219+00 by: Dan Lyke

Petronius, B&W photographers have been losing their favorite papers for years, and I think Linus's point is well taken. There have been all sorts of technologies that have been lost due to changing economics (Pyramids, anyone?), and that's not always a bad thing.

If I end up with a 4x5, I'd probably shoot to film and then scan that. Yes, there are things about printing that digital printers still aren't perfect at, but though I may be able to eek out room for a set of tanks and a changing bag I definitely don't have room for an enlarger and a full set of trays and...

I do want to look at what the CCD interface on the AT91SAM9XE is, because I've been working with that chip recently. If I can find sensors in the right form factor, it might be worth a few bucks spent at the machine shop.