Altered Images

Altered Images
This is such an intriguing process of producing artwork, or it was; Polaroid is no longer in business. What a shame! 

A number of years ago I met Elizabeth Murray at an exhibit of her Altered Polaroid Images.  I enrolled in her workshop (one day) and was more than excited with the painterly images that resulted from the process. 

Since that day I have produced many Polaroid pieces, using different procedures. I produced Altered images, image transfers, and emulsion transfers. 

In addition, I would print the images onto watercolor or handmade papers; hand color them with pastels, watercolor, and acrylics.  This form of photography was painterly, impressionistic, ethereal, nostalgic, and just plain fun.

Altered Polaroid
The print was made on SX-70 Polaroid film, with an SX-70 Camera and it delivered an image in seconds. 

While the Polaroid print is still soft and fluid, I could alter it with something as simple as a toothpick.

Image Transfers
Image Transfers were made from slides printed onto Polaroid 669 film (nasty stuff).  After printing the image on the Polaroid film, it was transferred onto watercolor paper. 

This step had to be done before the film processing was completed.  The film and negative were separated and the image transferred to the watercolor paper before the film develops.; Liftoff (the emulsion lifts off) can occur during the transfer. 

The amount of liftoff is completely unpredictable and unrepeatable, but very exciting.

Emulsion Transfers
Emulsion Transfer is probably the process I enjoyed the most. 

It was like working with a very small, living jellyfish!

The image is printed in the same manner as the Image Transfers, using a slide printer and Polaroid 669 film.  After the printing, the film must dry for at least eight hours, typically overnight. 

The dried film is floated in very hot water, about 160
°, and after a few minutes the print is removed and placed in a warm water tray. 

The emulsion is gently removed from the paper surface of the print.  The emulsion floats free (the jellyfish) and is captured with a piece of receptor paper. 

The process is a bit challenging, but great fun.
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