What is a Tintype?
A tintype is a positive image on a thin black metal plate. It is a "wet plate" photographic process meaning you have about 15 minutes to expose and process the wet plate before it dries out. From start to finish every chemical step is hand poured & created from the same antique formula that was used in the 1850's. This gives every plate a unique chemical signature making this process all the more special. In a age of digital photography where all your images live on social media sites and your phone. A tintype is unique and special. Each portrait is a truly unique piece – there is no negative, no printing, no copy. The plate that is prepared in front of you and exposed in the camera, is the very same one that you will take home.
This antique camera is not only a tool but a piece of art itself and a very important part of experience. Each photograph is captured on a Restored 1901 Eastman Kodak Century Studio No.7. This 8x10 camera can photograph plate sizes from 3X4 to 8X10. The great thing about this camera is no electronics! Good old fashion manual hand cranks and leavers.
Its only fitting that I use a lens that was hand crafted for this process. The lens i have carefully selected was crafted in Germany over 150 years ago made by Voigtlander & Sohn. The glass on this petzval lens was ground & shaped by hand to give each photo a unique swirly dream like effect for portraits.
This beautiful lens sat sat idle & untouched since 1920 until I put it back in service in late 2017.
It is not only about the photographs but more importantly, about the unique experience. Today, many of the younger generation have never seen a negative or even a polaroid. Selfies are one click away on their phones. Faster and cheaper we take the photographic process how it once existed for granted. Honestly, when was the last time you STOPPED and sat for a portrait? Often the answer is never. Sit down Slow down and relax. This process gives you the unique experience to be apart of the process from beginning - a blank metal plate to watching your image appear before your eyes.