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How did I arrive at the 1851 Logo?

Dale Wilson 1851 ambrotype antique collodion dale wilson Frederick Scott Archer glass negative historical photo processes pictureology

In advance of getting my little online store up and running, it seems I spent more time fussing over names than anything else.  The look of the store, the products to carry, whether to charge in Canadian or US dollars, and a myriad of other considerations can all be amended with little long term implications.

The name and brand, however, is quite another matter.

In my last entry I gave a brief explanation of how we arrived at the “Antique Pictureology” name. Due to the background of how the name simply fell into my lap, it just felt right. 


Yet, 1851 was always in the running as well. Of course, it was in March, 1851 that Frederic Scott Archer published  “On The Use of Collodion in Photography” in the science journal, The Chemist.   As a result of that published works, and improvements in consistency in the following years, Archer is recognized as the inventor of the wet plate process – the dominant photographic process used between 1851 and 1880.

I have always had an interest in letterpress, although I will be the first to admit I most certainly am not a student. Yet, I have to confess I find a certain romance in the wooden raised block and the peaks and valleys inherent when the paper  comes off the platen – a result in the flaws in the wooden block itself, and rough texture of the paper.

And this is how the 1851 brand, in its reverse, or negative form, came to be. It is little more than a logo designed to appear as a letterpress wooden block might in 185, and to pay homage to the inventor of collodion processes, Frederick Scott Archer (1813-1857).

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