Photography, Fine Art, Wet Plate Collodion, Alternative photography

Topshit photography journal 16th of June 2015

with 8 comments

Tomorrow is a big day. I’m almost finished with my preparations for Vienna Photo Book Festival . I’ve cashed in all my chips and now it’s time to go. I’m going to Vienna with a Land Rover, my old-timer. Today I’ve bought Hi-Lift Jack and I’ve sorted the bed in my Land Rover. As a huge fan of Top Gear, I’m planning to do Topshit Gear Special and I’m planning to record my trip as I do, with emphasis on photography and art. The book Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance is my inspiration.

I’m not doing this just for the fun of it, but I’m celebrating a new milestone in my photography path. I finally reached the destination after four years of intensive work. Six years or so I’ve seen an exhibition of Sally Mann in London Photographer’s Gallery and I’ve decided there on the spot I want to learn this witchcraft of collodion. It took me more then a year to find Miša Keskenović, who introduced me into the craft and another year to have met Mark Osterman in person. At George Eastman House I’ve seen original albumen prints of Eadweard Muybridge, France Scully Osterman, Mark Osterman and many others. I knew that I want to make a project with it. Albumen print process is in principle very simple process, but if you want to have rich tonality with clear white highlights and deep blacks, it’s very difficult. On top of everything I see my future artwork only in wet plate negative, that is much more difficult to do, then ambrotypes or tintypes.

Practitioners of wet plate collodion process know that the most difficult thing of all is the workflow. It’s one thing to make a good plate (either positive or negative) and it’s completely another thing to be able to do it in whatever situation it is. I bought the Land Rover so I could perfect my workflow and master the process so well that it becomes intuitive and I can focus on the photography itself not thinking on the process.

In the road I’m taking I’m celebrating that. I’m celebrating the past four years of learning and tackling the process and now I feel the process is very natural to me, I’m relaxed and I have plenty of energy to focus on the aesthetic and art. In this road I’m celebrating the fact that I’m making prints that are the best prints I’ve done. I love them so much, I can’t stop looking at them. I know I’ve reached the milestone of learning the craft. Now I can fully focus on my art, on the concepts, on ideas I want to share through the medium of photography.

Here are some random images I’ve done lately. Captioned.

8 Responses

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  1. Congrats on the milestone.

    Joseph Forsyth

    17 June, 2015 at 01:17

  2. That is awesome. I love your work, and recently the boxing gloves really caught my eye.

    Douglas Wilkinson

    17 June, 2015 at 02:10

  3. Thank you guys! Douglas, everything is on sale except my kidneys! (officially)
    Those boxing gloves aren’t in any of my projects, so they aren’t limited edition, so the print is affordable. Send me a private message and you can have it.

    Borut Peterlin

    17 June, 2015 at 09:52

  4. Congratulations, you rock! 🙂

    17 June, 2015 at 12:38

  5. Congratulations, Borut, you sound happy. You’re right, making plates in whatever situation on the road is very tricky — I can’t imagine a more perfect vehicle than Neena (my decommissioned NHS ambulance). I’m making hundreds of Ambrotypes in my huge project. Maybe I’ll move on to negatives in a few years! I hope it goes well in your Landy. Best wishes, Jack

    Jack Lowe

    17 June, 2015 at 13:18

  6. Hi Borut! I’m now in the same position as you were four years ago. I also decided to master wet plate and learn everything there is to learn about it. I now experienced that the knowledge only comes in baby steps unfortunately. Last weekend I managed to make my first image on a plate and man I was proud! I whish you all the luck and joy on your trip. Let us know how it goes,


    18 June, 2015 at 19:19

  7. I safely arrived to Vienna! It was a long and exhausting Road. I had some smaller issues with the car, but nothing I didn’t expect beforehand, so I’ve sort it out on the way. You know how Land Rover owners are saying, Landy is not leaking oil, just marking his teritory! Thank you for all the wishes and comments. I recorded few good video clips, it will be good Topshit Gear Special !-)

    Borut Peterlin

    18 June, 2015 at 20:42

  8. Have a great time Borut! Greetings from Italy!

    Miletic Marina

    18 June, 2015 at 22:02

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