University of Rochester Class Visits the Studio

Claudia Schaefer: Spanish 292: The Power of Photography in Spain and Spanish America. University of Rochester, Fall 2014 In November, I had my first portrait clients at the new studio and it was challenging and fun! University of Rochester professor, Claudia Schaefer, heard about Genesee Libby through a mutual friend. As she was covering 19th-century photography in her class, she wanted to give her students the opportunity to experience a wet-plate collodion portrait session first hand. I was a bit nervous to be photographing such a large group for the first time ever, but it went quite well.

Since winter has arrived, the exposure times in the studio are about 20 seconds when using available light in conjunction with my two fluorescent lights stands. This is a long time for someone to hold still but everyone did a really good job. People standing were able to brace themselves against the chairs.

I love to see people's reactions when they see themselves photographed with this process. Most of the time it is positive—people are excited to watch the image emerge in the fix and are usually pleased with the results.