A ‘dag’ plate is so unique and brilliant in its appearance that the only of having its forst hand experience is to hold it physically . A particular angle for its viewing, which makes the captured image stands out like a magic, seeing a dag is an experience in itself. The royal shine of silver and gold makes it large than life. The very first process of photography by Louis Daguerre had some unique qualities which was never found again in later processes. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that these qualities makes Daguerreotype the king of Photography processes.
1)Daguerreotype was the first and the last process which directly printed positive image on the medium (silver plate in this case.)
2) In most processes the photosensitive silver halides are suspended in a protective layer of collide such as gelatine ( for eg. our modern day negative films). But in daguerreotype, the silver halide is unprotected and on the surface of the support . because of this, the daguerreotype surface may be more sensitive to short wave ultraviolet radiation than convectional gelatine emulsion layer. In other words, this means that Dag plates potentially offer better image resolution capabilities than conventional emulsions.
2) Another unusual characteristic of the dag process is that it is a completely a dry process rather than modern day wet development which involves a chemical in liquid forms. Major part of image making in Daguerreotypes are done by the fumes of the chemicals, Idodine fumes for sensitizing , Bromine fumes used as an accelerator , Mercury fumes used for developing. Only Gilding is done by the liquid gold chloride solution but than its the part of image enhancing not image making.
3) In most process it is the result of variation in light absorption by the light sensitive material ( collodion, emulsion or current digital sensors) but in case of Daguerreotype it is the different degree of back scatter of light to produce the variation tones. In simple language other process depends on the absorption of light waves to form an image but Daguerreotype was depended on the amount of reflected light rays.
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