Mr. Photoengraver

Perhaps he was quite old, maybe younger in his late 50’s but most probably, older. He probably learned this technology as it was dying out in the early 50’s and 60’s. The technology was first used in the 1850’s. Were talking old, and were talking about the graphic art technology called “photoengraving”. At a major newspaper where I work, I just put through the forms to let go of a man whose title was “Photoengraver”. I asked someone, and upon their brief explanation of what it was, I became intrigued and dug a little deeper. It was chemical/mechanic process of taking a photo of a subject through a fine mesh of wire, so that a transfer of negative to metal plating, would be more accurate. Where light hit the metal, an acid was applied so as to engrave the image of the negative on the metal. In the newspaper industry they would apply the metal image to a newspaper cover or columns, and voile! you have a picture on newspaper. Back it up a step, just leave the metal as is (don’t press paper to it), and you have the way they used to engrave metal plaques for names, organizations and such.

I wonder if he probably made photos for Al Capone, the World Wars, etc. In a way, just honoring this mans work while looking back into the history of photography.

Look at the photo below, and notice how it looks kind of copperish color, because it is. The common metal used for posters like this were made from copper.

If you’re a photographer and want to shed light on this, clarify, add, or correct, feel free.

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