Photo by Ian Ruhter
The original is a mammoth 27x35-inch modern tintype of Monument Valley by Ian Ruhter. Ian is a former commercial photographer who has devoted himself to archaic process and sometimes calls himself an alchemist. He exposes sheets of tin up to five feet wide, working inside his camera. Each of his largest exposures requires a full day's work. The process creates imperfections, but, he says, "you get these mistakes that are so beautiful that you wouldn’t change them if you could."
This photograph is titled "John Wayne's Special Spot." It is known to have been the late actor's favorite place in Monument Valley.
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Featured Comments from:
Robert Salmon: "Love love love tintypes. They're the holograms of the 19th century. And like holograms, their unique visual qualities are impossible to reproduce accurately on the web or in print."
Gareth Gardner: "That's absolutely amazing. Having dabbled in wet plate collodion myself—and thoroughly enjoyed playing with all those chemicals—I really appreciate Ian's dedication and his achievements with tintype. I would love to see the results in the flesh, where you can really appreciate the flaws and textures that make this medium so special. Thanks for posting this Mike!"
Bruce McL: "For those who want to know more, Mr. Ruhter has made several videos about his work. Fascinating work."