The Dictionary Of Photography

A True Historic Record Of The Art & Practice Of Photography 100 Years Ago.

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the negative. The camera must be pushed close up to the negative, or a cloth so arranged that no light enters the room but that transmitted through the negative. It is not, of course, absolutely necessary that the camera should be used actually. All that is necessary is a board to support the lens, the focussing cloth or a black sleeve to prevent all light but that transmitted through the negative from having access to the sensitive surface. It will be found convenient if the camera or the lens, and easel or board for the support of the sensitive surface be on the same level, so that a board or table may be used, as seen in fig. 55, to obtain this end. The table or board should have some parallel pieces of wood nailed to it, so as to enable the camera and sensitive surface to be kept exactly parallel. The next question is the reflector (see fig. 55) outside the window. Many operators use a mirror for this purpose, but the objection to this is that a dark and a white cloud passing simultaneously over it, or actually the image of the clouds, will cause unequal illumination of the negative, and consequently unequal illumination of the enlargement. Certainly a mirror gives the greatest illumination. In place of the mirror, a sheet of white cardboard, enamelled iron, or opal glass may be used. The operator will make his own choice in this matter. The reflector must be fitted at an angle of 45o outside the window; and a cord fastened to the top of it, and passing through the sash at the middle of the window, will keep it in position, and enable it to be raised or lowered at will. We use a sheet of opal glass mounted in an old picture frame, which is, hinged at the lower end to the bottom of the window sash, and fastened by a cord at the top to the middle of the sash; a gimlet was used to make a hole in the sash, and the cord run through and rendered taut by a turn or two round a stout nail. The reflector, no matter what material it is made of, must be suffi-ciently large that, when the eye is placed at the position of the lens, and the negative removed, nothing but the reflector can be seen through the aperture in the shutter. The only point now needing a little elucidation is that of the easel or other support for the sensitive surface. This may actually be an easel, as offered by some commercial firms. We use an arrangement of a large printing frame measuring 24 by 20, which carries a sheet of plate-glass puttied into the rebate. Behind this is placed the