Wet plate collodion

Wet plate collodion have always fascinated me, and at last I’ve managed to make a few plates. There was a lot of trial and error with the first plates, a lot of errors, most of them due to vastly overexposing the image. I suggest my head is full of pinhole thinking. I did my first plates on laquered steel, so they are in a way «ferrotypes». I have also tried one plate on glass, what is known as an ambrotype.

One of the first ferrotypes, where it is at least possible to see something.

My first trials was done on May 1, and I use The Giant Mobile Camera as a darkroom for the process. The next morning I managed to make two more images, and (maybe) a little more successful:

The two ferrotypes from the next morning

The saturday after, on May 4, it was World Wetplate Collodion Day, and I had to make a few trials. The first one was a portrait of my dear Mervi, but sadly this too was a bit overexposed.

Mervi, 4×5″ ferrotype

I would not bother Mervi with more trials, so I made a couple of images of my «Door Guardian», a South African mask. The second one of them was quite successful.

My Door Guardian, 4×5″ ferrotype

At last, in the evening, before the sunset, I had to try one on glass, an ambrotype. I wanted to do a self portrait for the World Wet Plate Collodion Day Gallery, and so I did. The exposure seemed to be spot on, but I had some problems with pouring the developer, I think. Therefore you can see the black spots on my face.

Self Portrait Ambrotype, 4×5″, shot on World Wet Plate Collodion Day, May 4, 2013

I will do more ambrotypes and ferrotypes to refine my technique, and in the short future get a bigger camera that can make at least 8×10″ images.

Testing close limit of the Cameravan

Today I did a test and measured the close limit of the 600 mm Apo-Ronar. I used a helicopter helmet on a microphone stand as a «model» for this test.
At 81 cm from the front of the Cameravan it focuses on the big screen (250x125cm). Should be able to make macro portraits with this one 🙂

Here a photo of the projection made with my Olympus OM-D E-M5 with a Panasonic 7-14mm wide angle zoom, at 12mm approx.

Helicopter helmet, "close-up" projection

I have made a mount for a camera just below the lens/pinhole opening, to make it easy to make photos of the projections inside the Cameravan.

Next week I’ll get the signs for the camera, probably the first camera in Norway with permission to drive along the roads.

Tidying up the interior of the cameravan

Adding panels and hide away the ugly stuff

Tonight I have made some panels and fitted them to the bottom parts of the walls. This one hides the electrical system, but the fuse box is still available.

The aft panel, from the wheel well and behind.

This is the aft panel, from the wheel well and behind. The panels will be topped with plywood, so they will totally close in the (unuseable) radiators and all wires and tubes.

The right side panel ("lens side")

The last panel I mounted. Here I had to make a hole to access the 220V outlet behind it.

The panels will be painted black, as everything else inside the cameravan.

WTF! My camera is snowing down :(

It’s April 3, and it’s snowing like hell. If this continues over the weekend, I will not be able to take the cameravan to the inspection services April 10. At this time of the year we expect snow to go away, not to fall down in extremely large amounts. Fuck winter!

I don't have words...

I don’t have words…

The Giant Mobile Camera don't like snow, and neither do I.

The Giant Mobile Camera don’t like snow, and neither do I.

Soon it's WPPD 2013, we want the snow to go away.

Soon it’s WPPD 2013, we want the snow to go away.