Wow, I had a special day!
I was working with Hans de Kort, a great photographer from Holland. We work together a lot and I always like it, because he makes beautiful pictures and is always super enthusiastic about photography. He has different kinds of photo-apps on his iPhone and a few months ago he got a new gadget. I have to say that “gadget” is not the best term for this new item he has, because he bought a Deardorff 8×10”, which is an old camera from the early 1920’s. It is the most amazing big camera I have ever seen. Maybe you saw the movie “Lincoln”, so than you know that around the time Lincoln was president, photos were printed on glass. The Deardorff works on the same principle, but in this case Hans uses aluminum plates to print the photo onto.
After our job for a Dutch magazine, he asked me to be his testing model. He still has to learn the best way to operate the camera, because it is the total opposite of digital photography. Before Hans could take a picture, he had to prepare the black anodized aluminum plate with some collodion. After that he had to put the plate in a silver bath and this process had to be done in the darkroom. It took some minutes before the plate went into a holder and was ready for use.
Made by Hans de Kort
Today, photography is really fast; you just click and can see the result. With wet plate photography you have to be patient and prepared. It is slow photography. As a model you have to sit still for quit some time, because the exposure time is longer than normal. Hans made me sit still for only 3-6 seconds so I was lucky. After that, the plate went back into the darkroom and took a rest in a bath of developer. The fourth, and last, bath was the most exciting part, because that took place outside of the darkroom, so I could see it as well. This is the moment where the picture gets fixated and comes alive. Some of you know the excitement of taking a Polaroid, and you probably will have some made tonight if you’re in a bar in Amsterdam. Now, think of that excitement and make some funny dance moves; that is what you feel when you see the final result of collodion photography. Thanks Hans, these things make me love my job even more!
Now over to another happy fact, the weekend has started. This weekend I am going to make a super easy tomato soup that is actually to delicious to eat, so be prepared for some mmm’s and aaah’s!
As I said it is an easy recipe, all you need for 6 persons is:
- 12 Pomodori tomatoes
- 2 red bell peppers
- 2 onions
- 2 garlic cloves
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil
- 5 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
- Some pepper and sea salt
- 1 liter of boiled water
- 1 cube of vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons of dried Italian herbs (or fresh herbs)
- Preheat the oven to 200°C
- Cut the tomatoes in four pieces, deseed the bell peppers and chop them in big easygoing chunks. Some may call me lazy, but I call it rustic. Cut the onions in 4 pieces and leave the garlic cloves in their skin. They will get nice and soft in the oven
- Throw everything on an oven tray, I line mine with aluminum foil (it is sooo collodion photography style). Sprinkle the vegetables with pepper, salt and drizzle the oil and vinegar on top of it
- Then put the tray in the oven for 30 minutes
- Read a magazine and listen to some music…
- Dissolve the stock cube in the boiled water
- After 30 minutes you take the tray out of the oven and put everything in a big soup pan. Don’t forget to take of the skin of the garlic! Add your stock and let it boil for 5 minutes, then lower the heat.
- Take your hand blender and blend it until smooth, if you use a normal blender; blend it in smaller parts or your kitchen will have a nice red color.
- Can I get an aaaaah?