Gawain WeaverGawain Weaver: Conservation and Consulting Services in the Care of Historic and Fine Art Photographs

Photographic Process Controlled Vocabulary Now Available

August 15, 2014

This list of photographic processes may not have the most exciting title, but over the last five years many of the participants in my Care and ID of Photographs workshop have asked for a list of photographic process names. I have drafted several versions attempting to fulfill the needs of a diverse audience including auction houses, museums, archivists, and curators. Each attempt came up short and the lists have never been shared.

However, over the past year I have worked as a consultant with conservators and curators at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) on an IMLS-funded survey of the museum’s photography collection. This was the perfect opportunity to complete the list and put it to work in cataloging a very large and diverse photography collection. Many modifications were made as we worked together and with the Museum’s TMS database to make the list as accurate and practical as possible. So a special thanks to LACMA and the IMLS for their assistance in developing this document.

There is no perfect list of photographic processes, but I believe this document is a good start and is a practical list for most of the over 500 professionals to whom I have had the pleasure of teaching process ID and photograph preservation over the last 5 years.

Download Photographic Process Controlled Vocabulary as a PDF document here

If you would like the original spreadsheet for editing please send us an e-mail and we will be happy to share it with you.

We have established a LinkedIn group as a forum for discussions about the controlled vocabulary list including suggestions for additions and changes, as well as more general discussions about process ID and nomenclature. Please join us on the Photo Process ID and Nomenclature group.


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