Wet plate photography is a photographic process that was created by Frederick Scott Archer in 1851. It is a photographic process that requires large amounts of UV light which creates results that cannot be seen by the human eye until after processing is completed. Historically the process has required long exposure times which required people being photographed to remain very still and stoic. Portraits were primarily made outdoors or in studios with very large windows to allow enough light in. This becomes very problematic in the winter as the chemistry is very sensitive to temperature and the UV light is much weaker.
In partnership with my colleague Dr. Gregory E. Roth, we have researched and developed a process where we are able to use modern electronic flash combined with traditional wet plate collodion chemicals and cameras to be able to create these portraits on a year around basis in the studio. Most of the images in this gallery collection come from a project we did titled “Everyday Heroes” that featured co-workers at Spokane Falls Community. My personal favorite portrait was of Paul the plumber who keeps the darkrooms in the photography program operational which enables us to continue to teach historic processes.
If you would like to have a historic portrait made please contact me!