I have been attending, for the past three days, the Queensland Division of the AIPP‘s annual Convention (Hair of the Dog) here in Brisbane. It is a highly successful and well run event that enables photographers to avail themselves of education, equipment and energetic discussion. As in previous years I have had a small role to play, and this year it was as a bit player in the first presentation of the weekend. One of the recent and more exciting parts of the programme has been a photographic print swap by attendees. I expressed concern in an earlier blog that my print may not go to a loving and caring home. How wrong was I? The recipient of The Nevis Tree was Darren Smith, a Sunshine Coast photographer, specialising in weddings and portraits. As is common at these events, I did not know every attendee, and Darren was no exception. We are now “new best friends”. This is great, and is one of the side benefits of attending such activities.
What was just as important, was the nervous anticipation I endured whilst waiting to see which print I had received. Yee Haa – to my surprise, it was not a print in the traditional sense of the word, but a collodion tintype by newbie tintypist (?) Gold Coast photographer Alex Kennison. Alex and his lovely wife Alicia operate Savvy Studios on the Gold Coast of Queensland. Alex has been working with that wonder man of the alternate photographic process – Trevor Foon. The Remarkable Foon (see Dr. Seuss if you want to read about that OTHER Remarkable Foon) is a Wonthaggi based photographer whose real interest is alternative (read old-fashioned) photographic processes. The Remarkable Foon was also a speaker at the Hair of the Dog, and attracted considerable interest with his hands-on demonstration of the collodion tintype process. The tintype that Alex created Ode to Enoki is a creamy, rich and luscious still life, reminiscent of original tintypes.
My next moment of great surprise was to be gifted a tintype portrait of yours truly taken by The Remarkable Foon. Having been plucked from the workshop audience to pose under the hot lights of our HoTD lecturer/presenter/tintypist, I was overjoyed to be given the results of the photographic exercise. I would love to think that it was my rugged good looks that caught his eye, but pragmatic reflection probably observes that the salt and pepper nature of my aged beard reproduces well with this process! I now have two great examples of the genre to display in my collection.By way of information for anybody interested in the process, Foto Frenzy will be conducting a workshop with The Remarkable Foon later this year at their Coorparoo (Brisbane) based Photography Centre; and if you have an interest in alternative process, make yourself known to the guys there. (info@fotofrenzy)