Stairs – Fort Belle Fontaine (faux wet plate collodion)


A fake ambrotype of stairs at Fort Belle Fontaine. I wanted to grab a few photos of the cannon too, but it must have fallen into enemy hands, because it was… totally… not… there.

Capt. Jack Aubrey: “Right. Starboard battery, FIRE!”

2nd Lt. William Mowett: “One minute and ten seconds!”

Capt. Jack Aubrey: “Well done, lads. Extra ration of grog for all of you!”

Crew: “Huzzah!”

Russell Crowe & Edward Woodall – Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World

About this image: digital photographΒ (Canon 300D) heavily modified to replicate wet plate collodion


75 thoughts on “Stairs – Fort Belle Fontaine (faux wet plate collodion)

  1. Cool. We’ve got tons of antebellum homes with great stone-stacked stairs and gates around Nashville. Granted today you’ll see one of these historic pieces next to a Taco Bell or Piggly Wiggly, but still, they’re always pretty.

    • That sounds pretty wild, Ms. N!
      Something tells me I might feel a bit better about all the ‘5 buck boxes’ I was putting away if they came out of beautiful stone accented Taco Bell!

  2. I love what you’ve done to the place, SIG! An historical one. It’s really cool. I love all the steps and the scraggy trees in the background! πŸ™‚ I think if I tried to walk all those steps, I would fall off. Nice effect.

  3. Stairs are great for lookin’ at but my climbin’ days are over. πŸ™‚ Great pic…again.
    As for the canon I think maybe the gun control people might have won the battle and got rid of it so that it couldn’t be used in a domestic dispute or maybe to overthrow the government or something. I’m always lookin’ for a conspiracy.

  4. Excellent composition.
    So glad you are okay; grabbing shots of a cannon can be deadly. Leave it to well trained circus performers and superheroes. πŸ™‚

  5. This reminds me of one of those vintage etchings,
    those that are treated with acid on a copper plate
    I think? Of course I am probably wrong but anyway
    your fine interpretation of this one looks superb πŸ™‚

    Have a very nice start to your Tuesday SIG πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚


    • No… I believe you are absolutely right about that, Andro… photogravure (I think?)!
      Thank you so much! I sure like the sound of that! I haven’t done much print making to speak of, but I’ve always wanted to give it a try! Seems like it would be a lot of fun (and such interesting / unique results / effects, too)!
      Thanks you so very much, sir! I hope you are having a wonderful Tuesday as well, my friend!

    • That’s very interesting! A very good idea! But it sounds dangerously close to work, too. πŸ˜‰
      Right?! It was there the last time I visited… but head over with my camera and the thing completely disappears on me! What’s up with that?!

    • Many thanks!
      You know… I just checked out that movie from the library the other day (I had never seen it before). Then when I got ready to post this the cannon reference got me to thinking… so I popped in the movie to check it out. Pretty cool!

    • Mostly I do, JB! I mean… I do. Well, what I mean to say, is this is a combination of images I put together on the computer. I took the photo of the stairs with my digital camera. Then I took a piece of plexiglass that I had poured some polyurethane on and scanned that in. Then I combined both of them in Photoshop. There was a bit more tweaking, but for the most part that’s the process I’ve been using on these.

  6. Holy crap, Sig. This might be my favorite of all your images so far. I love the look of old photos, the daguerreotypes, the tintypes, ambrotypes, etc. This is beautiful. Also creepy. πŸ˜€

    • I LOVE all things wet-plate. It’s a goal of mine to be making the real thing(s) someday… sooner than later… I hope!!! Faking them is better than nothing, but the real things… DANG!
      Thank you so very much, madame! I’m thrilled to hear you liked this one!!!

        • ABSOLUTELY! If they’ve been varnished properly they’ll stand-up f-o-r-e-v-e-r! There’s something hauntingly beautiful about them. And I particularly like how each one is so unique… all the imperfections / artifacts… combine that with a vintage lens and DANG! I don’t know how to top that.

  7. I really love these old style ones that you do. Magnificent set of sweeping curve stairs & with your photo style I can just imagine people in their 1920’s style cloths walking up & down there..

    • Thank you so very much, Tony! Some day I hope to do the real thing… wet-plate images on glass (or tin). There is just something about that process… I’ve always been drawn to it!
      Man! I wish I had a figure or two in this one… in some period clothing… that would have been so much fun!

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