Artistically speaking solarization more or less reverses blacks and whites. It’s actually a lot more complex. Originally the effect came from drastically over-exposed film, then it became a darkroom technique, and now it is a digital one as well.
My friend Tee Corinne did all her work in darkroom solarization. This is her classic photograph from her Sinister Wisdom cover.
As I discussed in my Unexpected Art blog. I’ve been working for several months on new black and white prints (8.5 by 11 in) from Women en Large, Familiar Men and Women of Japan. The final group is Familiar Men and I did the first prints of them yesterday. One of the real joys has been finding ways that I can use digital techniques to enhance the work. Usually it’s in subtle and limited ways.
But when I was working on Women En Large: Images of Fat Nudes photos with Ctein, there were 2 prints that really worked digitally solarized. This iconic one of Debbie looks beautiful in the solarized version but not better than the original.
However solarizing this “Torso” photo from Women en Large was a different matter. I was very happy with the original print but I like this one far better. I’m really thrilled with it.
I wish Tee was alive to see them – particularly the “Torso” photo. She would have loved it.