Collodion Chloride – Aristotypes

A couple of days ago I read about this process on Facebook via a post of Mark Osterman. Seeing how fairly easy it sounds and not many extra chemistry needed besides what I already have lingering around it sounds like a nice thing to give a try. I know I have lots of things on my list already but it can never harm adding just one more..right? 😉

The Collodion Chloride process is a printing process (so it has nothing to do with the wet plate collodion stuff). According to Mark Osterman the process was introduced by G. Wharton Simpson in the 1860s. As I understand it it was the most archival silver based photographic paper ever manufactured. Eventually these papers were called Aristotypes and have been made until around 1930s (which is not that long ago).

A quote from the aforementioned piece (see link above) about this process:

“This isn’t wet collodion — collodion chloride is an emulsion process. There
isn’t any silver bath. Both the silver and chloride are mixed together and
the emulsion can be kept for years in a well sealed black bottle. When you
need to make a print, you just pour it onto the paper and let it dry in the
dark. It’s contact printed with the negative just like salt or albumen
paper. Actually, if you were disappointed when Centennial Gelatin Chloride
Printing Out Paper was discontinued a few years ago, collodion paper prints,
tones and looks the same….only it doesn’t ever fade!”

That surely sounds good! The chemistry is fairly simple and besides the Strontium Chloride I have everything I would need for this in my possession. Check out this link for more on the formulas and chemistry needed.

Anyway, hopefully I’ll be making some wet plate collodion plates this weekend if my throat doesn’t decide to get more soar than it already is 😦 And this would be great for future-thingies! Thought I’d share and keep this for reference-sake.

Have a bon weekend and marvellous Easter (whatever) 🙂



  1. This is on my hit list. I have the collodion and just need to purchase some Strontium Chloride which is available online here in NZ as a health supplement. Looking forward to that.

    1. Ahhh cool! Still haven’t started with it…so many things I wanna do haha! I’m actually saving to follow a dry plate collodion workshop so I can take plates with my in holidays etc. Longer exposure times but landscapes usually stand still pretty well 😉 Looking forward to your results, please share!

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