Writings and Others

I've been a photographer for thirty+ years and I still love shooting. I discovered wet plate collodion at the suggestion of a fellow obsessive whilst searching for solutions to an upcoming sabbatical project. After attending a demonstration by a local photographer I became entranced, and my journey began...

My training began in 2004 with France Scully-Osterman at Bennington College. While there, I became friends with a group of other like-minded artists and we agreed to attend an advanced negative making class at the Ostermans home in Rochester the following year. We continue this tradition today; largely inspired by groups of artists in the late 1800's who studied photography, often travelling together and enjoying each others company, passion for the Arts, racous debate, and general friendship.

The reason I love working with this process approach is many fold. It requires one to slow down and contemplate the image and interact with the subject in a very personal manner. It also requires executing a certain technical expertise by following a specific series of actions, (for safety reasons), as if a ritual; echoing the past. Further, it is also an experience based approach in that every image is unique. There are no light meters and such, just one's acquired knowledge and skill. Lastly it reflects the hand of the artist in a very satisfying manner in that most all of the chemistry is made and applied by hand.

But especially, I am intrigued by the notion that wet plate was the equivalent of digital for it's day and I enjoy exploring contemporary aesthetic through the lens of the 19th century.
steve wilson