Simulating a Calotype Glass Negative Print

Forest Reflection © Harold Davis
Forest Reflection © Harold Davis

The underlying photography in this image consists of two photographs of trees reflected in a puddle that I made in the Parc de Sceaux in suburban Paris, France with the camera on a tripod. One photo was made when the water was still, so the reflections of the trees were very clear. The other was made from the same position when it was windy, so that much of the image consisted of motion blur. Both were shot for as much depth-of-field as possible at f/22.

After combining the two photos in Photoshop using layers and masking, I applied the Calotype Glass Negative preset from Perfect Black and White’s 19th Century Processes preset to create the final appearance of my image. The Calotype preset digitally simulates an early photographic process invented by William Henry Fox Talbot that exposes a silver iodide coated substrate to light. The simulation shown here would have been of a print made from a calotype glass negative, rather than the negative itself.

Keeping in mind that I am a digital artist using my photographs as my source material, I am working on printing this image, with a number of possible papers and presentations in mind,

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