The collodion wet-plate process was invented in 1851 and is the third oldest form of photography. Its practical advantages over the Daguerreotype and Calotype made it accessible to all social ranks and it would rule the photographic world for the next thirty years.
The name wet-plate stems from the fact that the film had to be processed before it dried out, allowing the photographer roughly ten to fifteen minutes to coat, expose and develop the plate. Those who wanted to shoot outside a studio had to carry with them a portable darkroom, together with the chemicals needed for the process.
This is photography in its purest form, far from the predictability of digital and film. It dates from a time when building cameras of precious wood required a great deal of craftsmanship and passion, lenses had to be ground by hand and sitting for a portrait was an exceptional event.
Having your portrait taken means being part of the entire process. You will smell the collodion as we coat it, hold your breath as we expose it and probably never forget the moment when your image slowly emerges on the glass plate. Taking a single photo often requires more than half an hour and due to the complexity of the process the outcome is far from certain.
The final result, however is well worth it - a unique image (quite literally), formed by a wispy layer of silver on a fragile sheet of glass.
Having a passion for black and white photography, Zoltán specialized in portraiture using the wet collodion process. He is one of those alchemists who not only have mastered this complex technique, but also continue to refine the traditional process in pursuit of the perfect formula.
During each step he takes the greatest care to keep the process as authentic as possible. The outcome is a truly original photograph that survives for generations to come.
Purchase the shooting online and have your portrait taken at the Supersense palace. Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org and quote your order number to arrange a date.
Give a truly memorable experience - a personal wet-plate photo shooting with Zoltán at Supersense. The voucher with all contact details comes with an empty glass plate to bring along to the shooting for some magic transformation.
Vienna's one and only Venetian palace and flamboyant home to Supersense, the Dogenhof is a true architectural jewel from 1898.
After more than 100 years Vienna's giant Ferris wheel is finally available again as an ambrotype. Each plate is an original and slightly different than the rest. Made on site using a mobile darkroom. Signed and dated by the artist.
Alchemy at a mouse click!
For the first time in the history of photography we are proudly offering a wet-plate online service.
Soon you'll be able to simply upload your digital photo which Zoltán will transform into a collodion wet plate - adding unique analog characteristics and a surprising depth and feel... stay tuned!