Palladium @ QCP

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RoganJosh
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Palladium @ QCP

Postby RoganJosh » 03 Feb 2013, 21:37


Ian David
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Ian David » 04 Feb 2013, 06:33

Hmmm, I would like to get along and have a look at these. Thanks for the heads-up! The QCP scans don't seem to do them justice if they are well-executed 11x14 contacts...

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Alastair Moore
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Alastair Moore » 04 Feb 2013, 07:23

Moved this to the events forum

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Maris
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Maris » 04 Feb 2013, 13:17

The Julian Pierce pictures of Girraween NP were previously shown a Point Light Gallery in Sydney, September/October 2012. I reckon they reveal influences in style from Gordon Undy, the Director at Point Light, who does platinotypes in 11x14 (Ebony 11x14 camera) and who has also photographed at Girraween.

I have done extensive large format work, 4x5 and 8x10, at Girraween since the 1980's and Julian Pierce's photographs give a fair but limited overview of what's there. There is a lot of good stuff he missed. Or did he? Carrying an 11x14 across sometimes steep rock is heroic and an order of magnitude tougher than the 8x10 I carried. Eventually when a camera becomes so big as to limit mobility you get what you get and say thank you. Ultra Large Format is not called ULF for nothing. It's the sound you make when trying to pick one up.

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Maris
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Maris » 25 Feb 2013, 11:31

I was a the Queensland Centre of Photography on Saturday (Feb 23) evening and saw the "Granite" exhibition of 11x14 platinum/palladiotypes by Julian Pearce. Julian was there and much in demand for conversation but I got a fairly extended interview with him.

It turns out that he has been making noble metal photographs for some time but he perfected his technique under the tutelage of Gordon Undy aguably Australia's greatest platinotypist. The influence of the guru certainly certainly shows. Maybe Julian's photographs will find their own "voice" in time. What he does now is very traditional, very good.

The 11x14 camera is huge and heavy and Julian agreed that it limits mobility. Setting a perfect camera position may involve half an hour of exhausting labour and multiple trips to bring up the tripod, then the camera, then the film holders. It's all too much in one load. The payoff is supreme quality and image integrity. Like nearly everything in photography it is not an unalloyed bargain.

The platinum/palladiotypes got a mixed audience reaction. Some I talked to said they were tonally flat, lacked "snap", and didn't entertain the eye. Others saw them as classic examples of the genre: luminous shadows, controlled highlights, infinite gradations, and ultra-premium materials. For $950.00ea they are well priced for anyone wanting an impeccable platinum/palladium photograph for their collection.

Curiously the photographs were out of the frames that were used for the first showing at Point Light in Sydney. The QCP apparently bans works framed under glass and the platinum/palladiotypes were held up by little magnets at the corners. It was nice to see them up close without any intervening reflections.

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RoganJosh
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby RoganJosh » 27 Feb 2013, 17:27

I was going to say that I don't think it is worth compromising mobility, compositons and artistic vision just for 11x14 contact prints.. but then I saw the show.

It was my first time seeing contact prints that big and they are pretty amazing to say the least. The majority of the prints were high contrast with nicely detailed low values, and when combined with the ridiculous detail they appeared almost 3d. There were a few that don't have 'snap' but thats mainly due to his conservative printing style which is more suited to higher contrast scenes.

This experience makes me feel dirty about shooting roll film of late.

Maris, did he say why he didn't use gloss?

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Maris
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Maris » 28 Feb 2013, 08:45

Platinotypes and palladiotypes are always matte finish.

One reason is that the image lies in the paper rather than on the paper. The paper texture continues to be visible. Another reason is that paper choice is critical to the success of the process. Of the wide range of premium art papers only very few are suitable for platinum or palladium photographs and none of them are glossy; only matte.

It is possible to make a platinotype or palladiotype glossy by varnishing or waxing. There are historical examples. But these additions compromise the supreme archival qualities of noble metal photographs and no one (I know of) would consider doing such a thing today.

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Maris
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Re: Palladium @ QCP

Postby Maris » 04 Mar 2013, 14:48

Julian Pierce is giving an "Artist Talk" at the QCP, cnr Cordelia St & Russell St, Brisbane, on Sunday 17 March at 1.30PM. The subject will be the aesthetic and technical aspects of Palladio/Platinotype photographs and the Ultra Large Format camera usage that supports them.


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