KENT WISNER PHOTOGRAPHY
THE PLATINUM PROCESS
This alternative monochrome printing process was invented in the mid-19th century. It results in an extremely long-lived, archival print, and each print is unique--the product of a myriad of artistic choices including type of paper, custom-mixed sensitizers, developers, printing exposure light source and printing exposure time.
These are contact prints, made from negatives that must be the same size as the print itself. I make digital negatives for printing with this method, and I enjoy the combination of modern and antique methods. All platinum/palladium prints have a matte, rather than glossy or satin finish, because the sensitizer is absorbed into, and bonds with, the paper to create the image. (In a traditional silver gelatin print, the paper serves as a base for a layer of emulsion from which the image is made. Digital pigment prints also depend on a coating to receive pigment inks.) Therefore the platinum/palladium print is as long-lasting and archival as the paper itself. The oldest platinotype prints are over 150 years old.
My prints are made on cotton, acid-free, museum-quality paper, with museum-quality archival developing, clearing and washing methods. A platinum/palladium print also has a more gradual tonal change from black to white than silver or digital prints, giving graceful, smooth transitions from light to dark, especially in the mid-tones, with subtle details and a tell-tale visual impact. Prints available in various sizes from 4"x5", to 10"x12.5". I also make square prints up to 10"x10".