Wednesday, April 13

History, Metal and a Camera

Gosh, I love a good old photo with a story. The vintage family photos I have been blessed to own or have access to are treasures to me.

Unfortunately, my family was not in a position to capture daguerreotype, ambrotype, nor tintype images when these photography methods were being practiced in the mid 1800's.
However, last weekend, I was able to learn how these images were created, and how to reproduce my own, thanks to the knowledge and gentle teaching style of Sean Kochel -- a charming young man from Missoula, Montana.

It is a craft I will use again and again. Actually, the fact that I can do this might become part of family legend in itself!
It's a complicated process and not at all precise. There are very many variables. Seconds to count off, solutions to mix correctly. Humidity, heat and human mess-ups all decide the outcome.
These are two that I took during the weekend workshop, hosted by Dede Warren. Mine were not perfect at all.
Not even close to perfect, but fascinating (to me) nonetheless, and enough to lure me into the craft.

Stay tuned.

And check out this and this.


  1. you are a dream student of the world
    I want to camp out in your back pocket...

    xox - eb.

  2. obviously i missed the absolutely best part of the weekend! the tintypes are absolutely awesome and as usual yours are genius. so sorry i didn't get to say goodbye & i am hoping you will return again.

  3. I'm so glad you were able to come for vacation and this workshop Leslie. I couldn't have done it without you, not would I have wanted to!

  4. You are like a magnet when it comes to metal! Have you ever found an art form that used metal that you didn't absolutely love?

    You are going to ace this process soon!

  5. Stunning. Magical shots. I love how the present comes to resonate as history.

  6. I think you walked away with great photos considering all the variables as you mentioned. I can't wait to get the chemicals to play with determination. How fun. It was so wonderful to see you again Leslie. That picture of Dede keeps making me smile.

  7. The photos are AWESOME. You are a woman of many talents.

  8. Leslie, don't you LOVE it when you're inspired like this?! I'm just awed at how people can do this, and at how much I still have to learn. That photo of the lady in the hat is super neato, too!

  9. Leslie, this is wonderful! Great first efforts. I can't wait to see what you come up with. LOVE IT!

  10. Facinating for sure. I look forward to more!

  11. beautiful... i am sorry i had to miss this class, thank you so much for sharing your experience and photos!

  12. Totally loved these effects
    Happy Easter and all blessings to you and yours.

  13. I can SEE so many possibilities!!

    Anxious to see what you do with this...


  14. Wow, I can see the lure you are feeling. This type of photography is going to work so well with your books! I hope you are having a lovely April!! roxanne

  15. What a magical time you had, beautiful beautiful shots!

  16. What a fascinating adventure.
    These photos are dramatic and
    beautiful! really!
    can one take landscapes with this
    type of camera?

  17. Leslie it looks like you guys had a great time and the pictures look amazing! I know my mom was sending love, hope to see you in MT soon!