A couple of weeks ago, a few of us paid a visit to our friends over at The Shop, the legendary Indian and American motorcycle shop known for its treasure trove of antique American motorcycles and parts. We had the opportunity to photograph almost a dozen of their old iron horses with the help of our good friend Lisa Dodge and her 1860's tintype camera, so we jumped at the chance to capture the essence of these timeless machines on such a unique medium. The day was warm and overcast, which proved to be ideal by offering soft light and enough humidity to prevent the plates from drying out in between exposures. One by one, we wheeled out motorcycles ranging from Thor, Excelsior, Indian, Harley Davidson and Pope, and set them into position. While we pushed and pondered these old relics, Lisa meticulously coated each plate and focused her camera. After each capture, we anxiously watched each plate get rinsed, fixed and covered, while admiring the finished plates suspended in fresh water. Lisa's adherence to the ways and methods of the 1860's is what truly sets her apart and makes her work so authentic, and her dedication to her craft is nothing short of remarkable. After a full day of shooting and over a dozen tintypes to show for it, we were grateful for the experience.
We would like to thank Lisa Dodge (@reallisadoge) for all of her help and Dave "Huggy Bear" Hansen for allowing us to handle and shoot from his historic collection.
Photos & Story by Tommy Tatham