Tintypes are a photographic process developed in the 19th century
I studied photography in college, back in the just barely-pre-digital age, and began my love of alternative process photography there. I taught myself to make tintypes in 2012 on a bit of a whim, and have been perfecting the craft ever since, melding centuries-old techniques with modern lighting equipment and less harmful chemical processes.
How do I schedule a portrait?
Sign up for my newsletter. I’ll email Tintype dates as well as general musings about art, gardening, travel, dogs, tea drinking, and whatever else comes to mind.
Can I send you a digital photograph and have a tintype made of it?
Tintypes are made with a camera just as they were done 150 years ago, not with a filter or overlay. The good news is that the results are 100% authentic and awesome. The bad news - if it can be called that - is that means you have to actually be present and sit for your portrait.
How does it work?
Think of a Tintype like a Polaroid from the 1800s. I pour chemicals on a metal plate, soak that plate in a tank of silver, run to the camera (or at least swiftly make my way to it), make your portrait, and then run back to the darkroom to develop the plate BEFORE the chemicals dry. The process I use is essentially the same as when it was invented except that I use a more modern large-format camera, flashes (so you don't have to sit still for two minutes), and of course latex gloves. No need to be elbow deep in chemicals in this day and age!
Do you make tintypes of kids?
Absolutely! The only caveat I like to make is that children need to be able to sit still for about 20 seconds so I can focus the camera. If you’d like a tintype of a child that can’t sit still on their own, you’re welcome to be part of the portrait and hold/support them.
What kinds of clothes or props should I bring to my session?
I encourage you to dress up, down, wear layers, be a little theatrical, use your imagination, come with an open mind, and have some fun! (Wow that was an egregious number of commas!) Portraits are usually cropped to include just head and shoulders, so don’t worry too much about your footwear.
How many people can be photographed at once?
Without making special arrangements, the maximum I can accommodate is two people at a time.
Can you photograph my pet?
You may bring your animal if you can hold them while standing in a portrait. If you would like a tintype of your pet by themselves, let's talk first to be sure that it's likely to result in a good portrait.
What do we get?
Your tintype session includes the original, physical tintype, as well as a digital copy so that you can email and share your portrait online.
How do you suggest displaying my tintype?
Although tintypes are rigid and can be displayed on a small easel, I suggest framing them to protect them from scratches and the like. The best way I've found to frame them is to float-mount them on a black background, then mat them so that the frame glass does not come into direct contact with your tintype. If that sounds like a pain, I'm happy to frame them for you!