The Book of Alternative Photographic Processes: 3rd Edition Beginning Production, April 2014!

After 5 really interesting years I am happy to announce that the all-new, 850 page / 650 image, edition of The Book of Alternative Photographic Processes: 3rd Edition has been shipped off to the publisher. Now for 6 months of production and writing captions for all of the new images. Without any major issues, the new edition should be out in the fall of 2014. Watch for Pre-ordering on Amazon as well as an opportunity to get electronic preview chapters before the printed edition is released.

The first two editions of my book, The Book of Alternative Photographic Processes (Delmar Cengage-NY) in 2001 and 2009, received international critical acclaim and are universally recognized by artists, curators, historians, and educators as the definitive texts in the genres of alternative process photography and photographically integrated media. A significantly expanded, 850 page / 650 image, 3rd edition will begin production this spring / summer and will be ready for desk copy, reviewers and retail in the fall of 2014. In the interim, there are plans to introduce the book via electronic media with several select chapters... stay tuned for news on this development.

Since the first edition of The Book of Alternative Photographic Processes publication, published by Delmar in 2001, it has done extremely well. The book has been adopted nationally, and internationally, in high schools, colleges, and universities as standard text and has also shown significant strength in the retail market for over a decade... and two distinctly different editions.

New to the 3rd Edition:

  • A greatly expanded and lavishly illustrated 3rd edition with a projected 850 pages and 650 images. This 3rd edition represents a complete and total edit and rewrite of the 660 page 2nd edition.

  • New chapters on processes not expanded upon in past editions including: Bayard's Direct Positive Process, Winther's Bicro-Silver Process, The Whey Process (Sutton's), Pélegry's Develop Out Paper Negative Process, Fumed Silica, Inkjet Photopolymer Gravure, The Alternative Negative, Digital Imagining, and Wet Plate Collodion.

  • Significantly expanded chapters incorporating the integration of digital technologies with all alternative process workflows, wet plate collodion, gum bichromate, platinum / palladium, albumen, and calotype among many others.

  • Expanded, books within a book, including a 100+ pages chapter on the wet plate collodion process to address the exploding popularity of this revived alternative process technique of positive and negative images on glass and metal substrates.

  • An expanded Alternative Negative chapter with a stronger emphasis upon the hand made alternative negative options. This chapter features a significant contribution from GEH Process historian, Mark Osterman, Making, Coating and Processing a Simple Silver Bromide Gelatin Emulsion.

  • Significantly expanded A Little History sections to put the theme of each chapter in a complete historical, social, and cultural context.

  • This 3rd edition is a rare and abundant visual resource featuring what may well be the largest contemporary and historical compendium in print. There are many new images from artists from the 1st and 2nd editions as well as an abundance of new imagery from international and national artists, secondary and post-secondary students and photographic educators which serves as a way for teachers to "set the bar" for students of all ages. This has resulted in a very active social networking benefit of image sharing that we were not thinking of in the last edition, i.e. Flickr, Facebook, and deviantART.

  • Expansion of troubleshooting sections in each chapter.

  • Expansion of table and sink set-ups, supply lists, web and artist links, resources, and critical chemical information permitting an easy transition from classroom to home studio.

  • Expanded essay sections in the Forward Matter and Light Markings concluding chapter to instigate full conversations and discussion on the current state of photography and of how the medium is rapidly changing, how it is being redefined by digital technologies, and how alternative processes may easily be considered the new photography for artists, and students of art, who are dedicated to hand-made photography.

  • The Digital Imagining chapter is a mixture of history and editorial opinion. I'll begin with the legacy of the binary system and how it has transformed over the last few hundred years, from Vaucanson's Duck in the 1700's to the point where I'm typing this sentence on my laptop, at 30,000 feet, on my way to the Yucatan. The major portion of this chapter is about the signal, the performance, the eye of the monitor, and the art of digital imagining. My intention is to make a bridge from the 19th to the 21st centuries, where digital syntax can be a major part of that scaffolding, and to make a distinction between digital imaging and digital imagining and how this association can be used in contemporary alternative photographic pratice.

Table of Contents: 3rd Edition

  • Forward Matter
  • Making Art With a Box of Air: The Pinhole & Camera Obscura
  • The Anthotype and Chlorophyll Process: The Art of Printing With Flowers and Vegetation
  • The Calotype Process & The Art of Fixing Shadows
  • Bayard's Direct Positive Process
  • The Salted Paper Process
  • The Whey Process
  • The Cyanotype Process
  • The Cyanotype: Variations & Inventions
  • The Argyrotype Process
  • The Chrysotype
  • Fumed Silica
  • The Kallitype Process
  • The Platinum & Palladium Process
  • The Ziatype Process
  • The Athenatype Process
  • The Albumen Process
  • Wet Plate Collodion Process: Tintypes, Ambrotypes & Glass Plate Negatives
  • The Gum Bichromate Process
  • Dichromate Options: The Gumoil Process, Photo-Resists, The Chromatype, Bichromated Wash Drawings, Gum Bichromate on Glass, Herschel's Breath Printing, Estabrook's 3-D Gum Process, Winther's Bicro-Silver Process (1845)
  • The Carbon Print Process
  • The Van Dyke Brown Process & Variations
  • POP: Printing Out Paper Process
  • Hand Applied Emulsions
  • The Alternative Negative
  • Digital Imagining
  • Inkjet Photopolymer Gravure
  • Paper & Alternative Substrates
  • Light Markings


  1. Chemistry
  2. Conversion Tables
  3. Light & Exposure Options
  4. An Alternative Working Space
  5. Alternative Process Shopping List
  6. Resources, Artist's Links, and Internet Sites
  7. Bibliography: Historical and Contemporary