The Platinotype, 1883, Pizzighelli and von Hübl


William Willis jnr invented platinum/palladium printing, but he kept the details secret so he could commercialise the process. However, such was the demand that others sought to reverse-engineer his invention.

In 1883, Josef Pizzighelli and Arthur Baron von Hübl, both Captains in the Austrian army, published Die Platinotypie which explained the full process in great detail. This was quickly translated into English and republished by the Photographic Society of Great Britain (later to become the Royal Photographic Society). Platinotypes could now be made by any moderately skilled photographer, without being constrained by the range of the Platinotype Company’s products.

This 65 page ebook is transcribed from that 1883 translation into English (which is well out of copyright). It offers printers, researchers and historians an insight into the state of knowledge about platinum/palladium printing at that time. It is remarkable how little the modern process differs from Pizzighelli's.

Note: The Platinotype only covers the 'traditional' developing-out process. Pizzighelli had not yet developed his printing-out process when this was published, so it does not cover his printing-out process.