Saturday, June 26, 2010

Wet plate collodion Kim Grant

 I remember the day I met Kim I was drawn straight into to here eyes. I was trying not to stare but I could not help it. They were so big and full of light I want to know what was behind them. After I got to know her better I found out she is a very talented person. It all started to add up. The twinkle in her eyes is the same twinkle you see when you look up at the stars at night. One day Kim Grant will be a household name. 

The dress she is wearing is an is an original piece she made by hand. This image sums up what I am talking about.

Location: main st Los Angeles, Ca
Photo: Kim Grant

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

wet plate collodion demons

Ok this is an interesting one. I shot this photo of a man named Clifford as he was waiting for the bus. My first exposure seamed to be perfect but his face went black. I was very confused by this. When I got home I started looking at it to see what went wrong. Over his right shoulder I noticed a face in the background. It looks like some kind of ghost or spirit. It kind of creep me out. I’m not superstitious but there is some strange going on in this photo. In the olden days people you to think that your reflection is your soul. Mirrors, when you look into them, reflect your soul, not black light that hits them. So, if your reflection is your soul, then the camera captures your reflection witch means, it captures you soul. Is it possible that it captured this face as a spirit and that is why his human one went black? I don’t know but it is something to think about.

You can double click the image to enlarge it.
this looks like a faint image of a face looking over his shoulder.
what do you think?
Location:6th & main st, LA ca

Sunday, June 20, 2010

wet plate collodion american indian

  These pictures make me think of what Los Angles use to be like before we laid concrete and basically trashed it.  It must have been such a beautiful place.
  Let me explain how I ended up taking this photo in the first place: I was invited to a pajama jammy jam and upon arrival I met up with my friend Celina (girl in the photo). Her outfit for the night was Native American. It was crazy because she really looked Native American. I asked her if she was Native American and she said yes . I knew I had to photograph her as a Native Angeleno it just made sense to me. 

 I love this image in her eyes, you can see so many emotions. Before I shot this I repeatedly told her she would have to be real still for the photo. I could see she was concentrating on it real hard. Normally I would have had the person soften up there face. I liked it so I just let it be.  Looking at it now I think I shot her this way because the way I feel about the American Indians and the emotions I have about the way the were treated. 

I am not mad at this one either. I had her stand on this electrical box so I could shoot up and make the viewer feel they have to look up to her. The Urban/Native juxtaposition is super surreal.
Photo: Celina Vaniersel
Location: Los Angles, Ca

Friday, June 18, 2010

wet plate collodion parking lady

This is one of the first people I see every day. She works the valet for my building. She is also the nicest lady I have ever meet. Before I start my day she is waiting there with kind words before she sends me driving off into this crazy world. I have been trying be more like her now that I have experienced the impact it has had on my day. I had my camera out and she was walking by after she got off work, I had to get a photo of her. To me this photo is worth than a shot of a celebrity. I never understood why people hold celebrities in such high regards. I was thinking about things the other day and I realized my life is like a real-life movie, based on a true story. These are the people that walk down my red carpet I stand on the side and shoot them as if I was the paparazzi. Think about whom your heroes are, the people who really matter, they are the ones we should get all excited about when we see them.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

wet plate collodion Valerie Watson

This is one of my new favorites! I was setting up to shoot this man reading a book through a window right as I got ready to shoot him he moved. The thing about wet plate photography is once you get the plate ready it is wet sitting in a film holder. You then only have five minutes to shoot it and develop it or it will dry out. I’m sitting here with this plate in my hand thinking what am I going to do now. Out of no were Valerie Watson shows up it was perfect.  I asked her to stand in the middle of the sidewalk for a photo.  I ran back got my camera and then asked her to hold still for ten seconds. To ask some one to hold still for ten seconds free standing is quite a task. I can’t believe it worked out she is amazing and so is the photo. I love it when things work out like this to bad life could all ways be like this.
                                                            Photo: Valerie Watson
                                                            Location: Main st, LA, Ca

The hotel Cecil has so much history I had to shot it.  I have been told that in the 80 it was home to the night stalker (Richard Ramirez) who is a serial killer. I remember being very young and seeing the stories on the news. I was so sacred. To think I live on the same block now is a crazy thought.  
                                                                Location Main st LA,Ca

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

wet plate collodion Bob Dylan

 I have been told this image resembles an old Bob Dylan photo. It has such a vintage look to it. When you think about photography you look at it as moments in time.  This was an 8 second exposure. A lot of things can happen in 8 second I think they even made a movie about it. My friend James and I started talking about this after I took this photo. He said Ian you are capturing significant amounts of time in each image not just a moment. I thought that was an interesting point.
Photo: James Alegria
Location: 6 th and main st LA, Ca

Monday, June 14, 2010

wet plate collodin Los Angles some thing crazy

 Some thing crazy happened in the development with this photo. I think some of the chemical I use went bad. I am really stoked on the way it came out any way. This is a one of a kind photo I have never shot or seen any thing like it. 
Photo: Erica Baier, LA,Ca
Yesterday was just an average day in Los Angeles sunny sky’s like it is for the most part every day. I went down from my loft to the streets to shoot some photos. I would never shoot at 1 pm in the summer because the light is so bright and it just looks bad. But with this process I got amazing results. My friend Erica was riding up to the building I stopped her for a photo. I only took two photos and both came out good. With digital photography I have to shoot so many frames just to get one good image. When I shoot with my 8X10 camera it slows the whole process down. By the time I get every thing ready it seams like the person is relaxed and use to being in front of the camera. Digital you just turn it on and start shooting the first 30 frames look like a dear in the headlights.
                                                            photo:Erica Baier, LA,Ca


I wanted to capture reflection of the building in Anna’s sunglasses but it just didn’t work out so i thought . I was looking for a sharp image I have shot so many photos like this with my digital camera. When I got home I had another look at it I started to really like it. The softness of it is so different for what I usually get. I started doing this so I could get photos that are unique. Things seam going that way so far im stoke!
Photo: Anna Phillips, LA,Ca

Sunday, June 13, 2010

wet plate collodin Los Angles

The past week I have been working on a camera cart / portable dark room. I finally got it done. I want to build a cart that I could puss through the streets of down town Los Angeles. I did a shoot yesterday and got a few images. Im so stoke on this it is going to open up so many doors for shooting the wet plate collodin. When you shoot this style you need to make you film and develop it minutes after you shoot it.

                                   I shot this kid named Scott in front of the building I live in.
                                                             Location: Los Angeles

Here are the building across the street from where I live.
Location:  Los Angeles

This is my darkroom on wheels kind of dope!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

wet plate collodin calss with Will Dunniway

 For many years I have been searching for this and I finally found it. This experience has changed my life forever.  Last weekend I took an amazing class with Will Dunniway! I had the opportunity to learn the wet plate colldion process from some one who has 20 years of experience doing it. When I walked in to Will’s studio/house I was in awe. The photos he had on display are some of the most beautiful works of art that I have ever seen. Seeing these images in real life was like taking a trip to the Getty museum. There are a few of that stud out and I could not stop staring at. He had a shot from Yosemite that was printed with platinum. Platinum prints are amazing anyway but to mix the two is out of control, I all so saw a few tintypes and glass originals sitting above the fireplace. The tone and light that was captured by this colldion process cannot even be described by words. Its one of those thing you just have to see. He also has photos of American Indians that have never been shown to the public. Will is a master of this craft if you are interested in see his work go to:

Here are some photos from our workshop.
Photos by: Michael O’Neil

Will Dunniway shoots Ian Ruhter

Ted Roberts, with plate of Chrystal Scanlon

Outdoor studio. 
From left: James BurgessSkip Lind, Francis Michaels (posing), Will Dunniway, Ian Ruhter

Michael O'Neil gets head braced by Will Dunniway

From left: Will Dunniway shoots with aid from Skip Lind

Michael O'Neil  with his plate

Michael O'Neil

Chrystal Scanlon poses

Chrystal Scanlon immerses wet plate tintype into fixer
Chrystal Scanlon helps pose Skip Lind for Will Dunniway

an Ruhter develops his tintype

an Ruhter fixes his tintype

                                                      Ian Ruhter removes his fixed tintype
kip Lind pour collodion on plate

Will Dunniway mounts plate to rear of camera

Skip Lind, former American Airlines pilot poses as Red Baron

Skip Lind, tintype in fix

Chrystal Scanlon in tintype rack

Chrystal Scanlon
Plate rack of days work

Will Dunniway

Skip Lind, shows his results

Skip Lind

From left: Ted Roberts, Will Dunniway, Michael ONeil (knelling), Ian Ruhter, Skip Lind, Chrystal Scanlon, Francis Michaels and knelling, James Burgess

Every one was so nice in this class I wish I could of got to know every one better but my attention was on learning. I got so much out of this class it was well worth it. I just want to thank every one who was there. It was one of the best experiences I have had in a long time!!
Ian Ruhter

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Wet Plate Collodion Process

I recently started the doing the wet plate collodion process and my friends have no idea of what it is. I have been getting question asking how does it work? Well friends here is a quick video of what it is and how it works.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

wet plate collodin- Pat more

 This is one of my favorites. If you know Pat Moore then you know this is a very different looking photo for him. I have shoot him 100s of time but never got an image that looks like this of him. To me it looks like a jail photo or some thing from the 1950s. I just know I’m stoked on it. I took 3 photos this day the first 2 were to get the proper exposure. What a big change this is from shooting 100s of digital photos with hopes that one will turn out. 

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Wet plate collodin- stealing people souls

 They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. When I was focusing my camera on Mario Kappeli eyes I felt like I could see in side his soul. I have never experienced any thing like that. My 8x10 camera is a very a special camera. It is by far the best camera I have ever used it feels kind of magical when I use it. Maybe that’s why people use to say photos would steal peoples souls. I don’t feel like im steeling them more like im showing the world what the look like. This is a 3 second exposure using the wet plate collodin presses. Shoot on location in Palm Springs.