Lesson 3: Temperature effects the emulsion

So I had a relatively successful day, it is only the 4th time I have shot wetplates. I had a particularly lovely sitter and somehow everything was working…Except it wasn’t! It was a very hot day and I had the collodion out in the sun (big mistake) result = goopy collodion. So I made a new batch after watching it become the consistency of golden syrup. I made the mistake of not thinking about how this extreme temperature might effect the plates – well I found out. They started peeling off in a sudden gloriously and quietly destructive ripping and tearing of a days work. Luckily not all was lost, and I immediately digitised what I could before they were all peeled off. I quickly put the rest away in a nice dark cool place. The emulsion on it’s own is so fragile, time I braved learning how to varnish them I think… but that will be another post. Fingers crossed.

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