The technique used by LIGHTCATCHER is that of AMBROTYPIE (from Ambrotos - Greek for "immortality").
This photographic process, dating back to 1850, uses large and historic bellows cameras to create UNIQUE pictures.
It is a wet process that requires the black glass plates to be prepared, developed and fixed directly on site.
The ambrotype is a UNIQUE item that cannot be manipulated or reproduced. This technique is used to create light paintings on black glass plates. The black and silver images are characterised by a sharpness that emphasises every detail.

The coated glass plates have a light sensitivity of approximately one (1) ISO and for the most part only react to the ultraviolet part of the light spectrum, i.e. the part invisible to the human eye. This means that we are in fact photographing invisible light.
After a few minutes in the liquid silver bath, the plates are placed in a lightproof magazine, which is then attached to the camera. From this moment on, photographs must be taken, developed and fixed within about five minutes before the photographic plate dries and becomes unusable.
These images are not negatives that can be manipulated, enlarged or reproduced, but positive images on glass and are therefore unique.

When the picture is finished, it has to dry and then be sealed to prevent the silver from oxidising.


Lightcatcher      Barbara Holzknecht  and  Kurt Moser

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© Volker Marschall