Invented in the 1850s, tintypes are positive images produced on metal plates. They were very popular around the time of the American Civil War, and many vintage tintypes can still be found at flea markets or antique shops today.
The process we use to produce our tintypes is known as wet plate collodion. First, a plate of black anodized aluminum is coated with a salted collodion solution. The plate is then placed in a silver nitrate bath for a few minutes, making it sensitive to light. Once it is sensitized and placed in the camera, an exposure is made and the plate is immediately developed in the darkroom.
The final part of the process is fixing the plate. As our guest, you can watch as the developed plate turns from a negative to a positive image in the fixing bath, revealing your final photograph!