Re: The Center for Photographic History and Technology

From: Richard Sullivan ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 07/28/05-01:51:23 PM Z
Message-id: <>


At 12:21 AM 7/28/2005, you wrote:
>Subject: Re: The Center for Photographic History and Technology
>Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2005 02:47:32 -0400 (EDT)
> > It is a carry over from the APIS logo. The hexagon can either
> > represent the beehive cell, the carbon atom or benzine ring, or a
> > lens shutter -- take your pick. Most corporate symbols today are not
> > symbolic so in that sense we are old fashioned.
>I had a small hope that it was an abstraction of tabular grain silver
>bromide crystals but obviously that was way off :-)

Add one more to the list!

>Incidentally, I agree a lot of corporations seem not to use symbols or
>illustrated logos, but a lot of examples of excellent designs can be
>found in magazines like Print, my favorite magazine.

We agonized over the kind of logo we'd use. We meaning I had the veto
power. I felt that trying to invoke an old fashioned look would be the
wrong tack. The first instinct is to come up with something with an old
dude in frock coat and a big O view camera on wheels. Instead we are a
modern organization and perhaps I've overdone that with a Star Wars style
logo but better that than the old fashioned look. it also fits nicely on a
pin we're going to have made.

And yes we have more ideas than people to implement at the moment. Luckily
much can be done by remote people and people here are certainly
remote.<grin> As is usually the case, we did not have all the ground work
in place by APIS time so we were not as prepared as we should have been for
the big announcement. Getting the Federal tax exemption has been made quit
a bit harder with the new revisions this year in the law and code. The Feds
have been making it harder and harder each year. I had been hoping for the
federal exemption to come through but they had me jumping through hoops as
the New Mexico Incorporation law appears to have been written by Billy the
Kid. I had to make all sorts of revisions to our NM articles of
incorporation that otherwise would not have had to been done in most other
states. The also send the documents here by Pony Express. As it turned out
Melody got the 501(c)(3) letter in the mail the night before the APIS
opening session and did I did not know about it until she sprang it on me
during her greeting to the group on the first day of the presentations.

YIKES! I find it hard to believe that anyone is doing big time research
into wet photo chemistry!

  I am going on my instincts. Back in 1980 my accountant said I was crazy
to do Bostick & Sullivan. She was quite an active photographer and new
something about photographic history. She said there was not a market for
platinum and palladium salts for photography as no one did that anymore.

Well.. that is like the Board of Directors of a railroad co. trying to
decide if they want the train to stop at Centerville at 3:00 PM. So what do
they do? The send someone down to the Centerville Station to see if anyone
is waiting for a train a 3:00 PM.

That was 25 years ago and quite a track record for a niche product
organization. I think I can rightfully say I did something right. This time
I've got a pretty good team behind me so it is not as much as go-it-alone
venture as the B+S one.

My instincts tell me that is a large enough body of people working in
photographic printmaking that an organization like this can succeed. It can
also help the filed to grow. If the train stops maybe some people will get on.

When I use the term "printmaking" I think it resonates with folks that it
means just that, making prints. I suppose some people will consider pushing
the "send" button to be printmaking but then they are probably the same
folks who think because they are using the black ink an Espon they are
making carbon prints because Apple tells them that is so. They are beyond
help, so let them live in their delusions.

I have had some advice, in fact quite a bit. Some is based on bringing in
more young people -- to me that's anyone under 60<grin> This group will be
of some value to beginners etc, but that is not the target audience. We
seek to make this a professional organization representing serious workers
in the field. It will serve those best who have some background in
printmaking photography. This will also serve those beginners in a better
way since there is room to grow in the organization.

I sense a real openness for the advanced folks to help newbies. It also
allows room for growth in the organization. I remember the photo mags in
the 50's ,60's, and 70's always being filled with articles on how to pick
your first camera, or how to make an enlarged print. Rarely was there
anything of value for the advanced worker. Eventually the only thing of
value was the new camera reviews. If we target the beginner we lose the
advanced workers, lose them and there is no top end to grow to or people to
help the beginners.


I ramble.

Cheers for now.

--Dick Sullivan

>For the rest of your response, thank you for taking time to describe
>the details of the new Center. I recall some of them mentioned in
>this list before but I wasn't at APIS so I didn't know about most of
>them. Those non-event related projects certainly sound intriguing.
>Regarding the refereed journal plan, one option might be to encourage
>members to publish in existing journals until certain volume and
>interest is generated. Although not very common, I have read several
>papers on photographic history in journals like Photographic Science
>and Technology (the journal is now taken over by new series) and
>Journal of Society of Photographic Science and Technology of
>Japan. The latter society publishes mostly in Japanese, but there are
>some English sections, and their table of contents still look like the
>Photo. Sci. Eng. in 1980s (that is, full of chemical based photography
>and big names who are *still* doing research on silver based
>photography in 200x at corporate research lab and universities). This
>society seems very active also in the area of history, conservation
>and image permanence, as well as camera technology and market
>analysis. The publications of SPSTJ are rather rare in US libraries
>but they do ship journals overseas with no extra cost to the nominal
>membership due. They are also set up to mail photocopy of past papers
>for a fee plus shipping.
Received on Thu Jul 28 13:49:50 2005

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