Compare and Contrast Daguerreotype vs Calotype Photography Essay compare and contrast daguerreotype vs calotypePhotograph 1 : daguerreotype Photograph 2: C

Compare and Contrast Daguerreotype vs Calotype Photography Essay compare and contrast daguerreotype vs calotypePhotograph 1 : daguerreotype Photograph 2: Calotype Feel free to discuss the processes used to make them, their content, characteristics (both visually and physically), as well as give your own opinion of which you prefer and why. This should be at least 500 words. chapte r two : the dague rreotype
Sabbath by daguerreotyping these characters in the most
obscene positions.30
In fact, the frankness and voyeuristic quality of
the camera image allowed it to take over the underground market of erotic art. Among the Broadway
operators, rumors circulated about unscrupulous
individuals making illegal pornographic daguerreotypes after hours and on Sundays. The realism of the
daguerreotype added to the licentiousness of such
imagery. Their illegal nature and no doubt premium
price kept the audience for these secretive pictures
limited.31
Picture factories prospered due to management
practices that promoted aggressive advertising, used
smaller-sized plates to cut expenses, relied on a division
of labor to speed up the operation, and encouraged a
relaxed attitude towards aesthetic and technical standards. Long before Henry Ford, Broadway’s Reese &
Company used an assembly-line approach, with each
employee performing a specialized task. A customer
purchased tickets for the desired number of sittings and
an operator made a corresponding number of plates,
following rigid posing formulas. The plates had been
prepared by a polisher and a coater, and then brought
to the operator for the posing. Next, the exposed
plates were passed to a “mercurializer” who developed
them through fuming with mercury. A gilder toned
them, and, for an extra fee, an artist would hand-tint
them. After being set into individual casings, the plates
were delivered in as little as 15 minutes. Generally, the
camera operator never saw the finished pictures. Sitters
kept the ones they wanted and disposed of the rest;
no refunds or reshoots were given. Abraham Bogardus (1822—1908), who ran a successful photographic
studio on Broadway in New York and in 1869 was
elected the first president of the National Photographic Association, recalled a customer who protested
that, “My picture looks like the Devil,” to which the
Broadway portraitist responded, “I had never seen that
personage and could not say as to the resemblance, but
sometimes a likeness ran all through families.”32
SAMUEL J. MILLER (1822–1888). Frederick Douglass, circa 1847–52.
5½ x 41?8 inches. Daguerreotype.
Douglass, a former slave and leading abolitionist, frequently had his
portrait made, thought photography to be the most democratic of the arts
and considered it to be an important tool in the drive to end slavery in
the United States.33
AFRICAN AMERICAN
OPERATORS
African Americans were in the business as well, building a wealth of images in a community where most
portraits previously did not exist. Jules Lion is credited with inaugurating the daguerreotype in New
Orleans. From 1843 to 1853 Augustus Washington
operated daguerrean studios in Hartford, CT, before
moving to Liberia, where he also made daguerreotypes. In New York City, Berthe Wehnert ran a
41
seizing the light
respecting the distinctive features of Negro physiognomy. We
have heard many white persons say, that ‘Negroes look all
alike,’ and that they could not distinguish between the old
and the young.They associate with the Negro face, high cheek
bones, distended nostril, depressed nose, thick lips, and retreating foreheads. This theory impressed strongly upon the mind
of an artist exercises a powerful influence over his pencil, and
very naturally leads him to distort and exaggerate those peculiarities, even when they scarcely exist in the original.34
James Presley Ball, Sr. (1825–1904), a free lightskinned, African American man35 became a daguerreotypist after studying with John B. Bailey, a black
daguerrean from Boston, at White Sulphur Springs,
(now West) Virginia. Born in Virginia, Ball spent his
youth in Cincinnati. Between several attempts to
establish a gallery in his hometown, Ball worked as an
itinerant operator, before succeeding there in 1849.
He opened a second Cincinnati gallery on New Year’s
Day in 1851, the nationally known “Great Daguerrean Gallery of the West.” An active abolitionist, Ball
commissioned Ball’s Splendid Mammoth Pictorial Tour of
the United States Comprising Views of the African Slave
Trade… . 36 a 1,800-foot long painted panorama that
depicted scenes related to slavery, from capture in West
Africa to freedom in Canada. Thousands viewed the
painting in Cincinnati and Boston. Ball’s gallery was
destroyed by a tornado in 1860 and his friends helped
re-outfit it, which would gain the reputation as “the
finest photographic gallery west of the Allegheny
Mountains.”37 Ball photographed prominent sitters
like Frederick Douglass and the family of Ulysses S.
Grant. Working with his son, James P. Ball, Jr., they
later opened studios in Minneapolis; Helena, Montana; and Seattle. Ball’s best-known series was made
in Helena in 1896, of the execution of William Biggerstaff, who was convicted of murdering a black man.
A group of cabinet cards show Biggerstaff first sitting
pensively in a chair, then hooded and suspended from
the hangman’s noose, and finally stiffly laid out in
his coffin. A similar series depicts William Gay, Biggerstaff ’s cellmate and another convicted murderer.
AUGUSTUS WASHINGTON. John Brown, circa 1847.
3¼ x 4¼ inches. Daguerreotype.
This daguerreotype of abolitionist John Brown was taken by African
American photographer Augustus Washington twelve years before
Brown led his aborted slave insurrection in Harpers Ferry, West
Virginia. Before the introduction of the daguerreotype, it is unlikely
that a workingperson like Brown would have a likeness for future
generations to ponder.
calotype studio. In an era of slavery, oppression, and
violence Frederick Douglass addressed the issue of
self-representation in The Liberator, a Boston-based
abolitionist newspaper, published by William Lloyd
Garrison between 1831 and 1865.
Negroes can never have impartial portraits, at the hands of
white artists. It seems to us next to impossible for white men
to take likenesses of black men, without most grossly exaggerating their distinctive features. And the reason is obvious.
Artists, like all other white persons, have adopted a theory
42

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