Liquid Light

(worked in a pair)

Knowing that I’d be back in the dark room was a scary thought, and I was quite nervous about the workshop, because I thought I’d constantly struggle and not get the hang of it. First we were shown a demonstration and were given hand outs, which were a huge help as I could refer back to these for the timings.

It wasn’t nearly as bad as I was expecting, although there was a slight hiccup, were we had forgot to dim the lens on the enlarger, and we couldn’t work out why our prints were coming out so dark. Once that was sorted, it all went well. We chose to work with just one photo so it was easier to experiment with and see the differences more clearly.

Liquid light is a liquid emulsion that can be applied to any surface, and once dry, you can expose an image on it (using an enlarger) then go through the chemicals (developer and fixer) and the image will then be on the surface you chose, it can be applied to objects too. During the workshop we used paper, as other materials would have needed preparing and more coats of liquid light.

I loved being so hands on in the darkroom this time round, I think I didn’t enjoy it before because it was so technical, this time was how I imagined it would be (how it is in the movies). The image appeared so quickly in the developer liquid, it may sound childish but I found the process magical in a way, and it was no where near as stressful as before, I’d even go as far to say that it was relaxing (at least when it was going right).


testpiecesThese are the tests we made, changing the exposure time and grade, learning after each test what needed to be different. Even the image is too dark, i love the brush strokes you get from this process.

mocca1This is the final image on a thick piece of paper, I’m really impressed with the outcome, the brush marks make you want to touch the surface of the image, its very texturised.

I would like to see how this process works when you are applying the image to a piece of wood for example.

mocca musicI also brought in music paper, to see what this would look like with a photo printed on it, it’s a visually pleasing effect, if I was to use this though I would think more about the subject of the photo, have a musical instrument or a photo of a band, things that fit the musical genre. The paper that we used this time round was lot thinner, and it didn’t do well in the water, another attempt ripped and was quite mushy, it was just a case of handling them delicately.

I thoroughly enjoyed this workshop, and would consider experimenting further with the process.


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