...Photographs should be protected from extended exposure to intense light sources. Limit exhibition times, control light exposure, and monitor the condition of the photographs carefully. Prolonged or permanent display of photographs is not recommended. Use unbuffered ragboard mats, and frame photographs with archivally sound materials. Use ultraviolet-filtering plexiglass to help protect the photographs during light exposure. Reproduce vulnerable or unique images and display the duplicate image; in this way, the original photograph can be properly stored and preserved.

Disaster preparedness begins by evaluating the storage location and the potential for damage in the event of a fire, flood, or other emergency. It is important to create a disaster preparedness plan that addresses the specific needs of the collection before a disaster occurs.

The location and manner in which photographs are housed can be the first line of defense. Identify photographic materials that are at higher risk of damage or loss. Remove all potentially damaging materials such as paper clips and poor-quality enclosures. Store negatives and prints in separate locations to increase the possibility of an image surviving a catastrophe. If a disaster occurs, protect the collection from damage by covering it with plastic sheeting and/or removing it from the affected area. If using plastic, make sure not to trap in moisture as this could lead to mold growth. Evaluate the situation and document the damage that has occurred. Contact a conservator as soon as possible for assistance and advice on the recovery and repair of damaged materials.

PS .If your photograph requires special attention or you are unsure about how to protect it, you should contact a conservator.To search for a conservator near you.

Cabaret of Spirits ATELIER

Cabaret of Spirits ATELIER

Treatment Options for Photographic Materials may include

mold removal
surface cleaning
stain reduction (only if possible and safe to do so)
tape and adhesive removal
separation from poor quality mounts
consolidation of cracked or flaking emulsion
mending tears or breaks
conservation of cased photographs and case repair
electro-cleansing of tarnished daguerreotypes
rehousing options
four-flap enclosures
clamshell boxes
polyester sleeves
conservation framing


Hundreds of millions of photographs have been lost over the years to natural disasters, wars, and the age-old urge to clean house. So there is something special about every old photograph that's survived. Someone decided to make it... someone else, to buy it... and a lot of someones decided to keep it over the years. Whether you're the caretaker of a treasured family album or a collector who has searched out the classics of photography, it's important to preserve and protect the images you value. Fortunately, there is new information about what to do and what to avoid. And there are specialized products available to help.



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Thursday, 28 April 2011


G.C.Ritter Von Max 1840- 1915

1864 - c.1900

This was a photo-mechanical process. Just like the carbon process, ( I will talk about the next blog ) the Woodburytype process produced prints that did not fade because the images did not rely on light-sensitive materials.
The images were, in fact, made up entirely of stable pigment suspended in gelatine.
The Woodburytype process produced a very high quality of final image, but it was not an easy process to use.

... the gelatin relief is impressed into a lead plate, thus creating a mold relief that is virtually identical to the gelatin relief. The lead mold is filled with a warm pigmented gelatin and a sheet of paper is laid on the mold and closed in a bookbinder"s press. When dry the sheet is removed and the prints are trimmed, as there is always extra gelatin that has squeezed out around the edges. Thus Woodburytypes are always trimmed and mounted.
Were often pasted into books as illustrations.

... an early member of the Photographic Society of Scotland in the 1850s wrote, twenty years later, to the British Journal of Photography.

His letter began:

"There are three processes which are supposed to be permanent, namely the heliotype, the Woodbury and the autotype. The two former are quite out of the question: they require expensive and bulky machinery, attended with an amount of difficult manipulations which amateurs are not likely to encounter"

"The autotype is more hopeful, but until it is made cheaper and a good deal easier to work, I do not think it will be generally adopted."

"For the present amateurs must be satisfied with silver printing; and, speaking from a very long experience, I take a much more cheerful view of the permanence of silver prints than most people do. These pictures have got a bad name; but it has arisen from a cause which is not difficult to explain."

"We live in times when, owing to competition, cheapness is much more thought of than good quality; and this has forced professional photographers to send out prints which they know are not half washed, and which they equally well know must fade in a few years."

" ... ... I am satisfied that if amateurs (I address this communication entirely to them) are content to print a small number of pictures at a time - say half-a dozen - to put some carbonate of ammonia in the hypo fixing bath (for which there is a good chemical reason), and then expose them for three or four hours to a continuous stream of water, always changed by means of a syphon, most of their prints will be blooming long after the greater number of my amateur friends have faded away for ever."

14 July 1876

Charles Robert Darwin's portraits , 1809-1882, naturalist, co-discoverer of the theory of evolution and author of the world-changing book, "On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection", first published in 1859.