"Ctein is ...an exceptionally fine printer — one of the last of the true old-fashioned photographic craftsmen. And the guy has a mind like an encyclopaedia." — Mike Johnston, Editor, PHOTO Techniques, 1996
"Part fine-art photographer and part computer wizard... Ctein is well-versed in today's technologies, including the World Wide Web." — Photo District News, 1998
"Bringing a photograph back to life is as satisfying as printing a brand new photograph." — Ctein, 2003
For 25 years he has been a master dye transfer printer. This incredibly complex and difficult process produces by far the finest photographic prints and has been mastered by only a very small percentage of color printers. His photographs and prints are so impressive that Kodak's own dye transfer experts proclaimed that there was no one alive who produced better color prints than Ctein. He has been Kodak's featured photographer at the PMA professional show.
Ctein is one of only a handful of printers still working in this 70-year-old medium and has produced an impressive portfolio of work. Ctein's Online Gallery has many examples of his work along with a full description of the dye transfer printing process.
When other photographers want the absolutely very best color printing, they turn to Ctein. He has printed for such notable photographers as:
— photojournalist Ken Jarecke, whose famous "Face of War" photograph defined the first Gulf War
— music photographer Jim Marshall, whose iconic rock and roll, blues and jazz photographs are well-known to every lover of modern music
— portraitist Bernard Lee Schwartz, whose portraits of everyone from the Pope to Twiggy are in major collections around the world
Ctein's prints reside in major academic, governmental, and museum collections around the world — even the Royal Family of Great Britain has prints made by Ctein.
A widely-read author, Ctein easily has a million words in print. Ctein literally "wrote the book" for Kodak on many dye transfer printing techniques. Several of today's elite circle of dye transfer printers say they owe their beginnings to Ctein's instruction in that craft in magazines like Petersens PhotoGraphic.
Over a quarter century, he's had hundreds of articles and columns published in numerous photography and technology magazines, including PHOTO Techniques, Infoworld, High Technology, Camera & Darkroom, Rangefinder, PhotoPro, and Optics and Photonics News. His subjects include how-to articles on darkroom methods, analyses and commentary on the present and future worlds of photography and of computers, critical reviews of photography exhibits and books, software and hardware reviews, and tests of cameras, films and papers.
He has written the critically acclaimed book, Post Exposure: Advanced Techniques for the Photographic Printer. Arthur Kramer described this book as one which, "...will become the key reference text in just about every darkroom dedicated to quality work. It is truly a masterpiece of technical analysis and instruction that answers every elusive question..."
Ctein's technical credentials are equally impressive. His knowledge of computers and digital photography runs wide and deep. Educated at Caltech, Ctein has provided research, testing and consultation to companies such as Apple Computers, Eastman Kodak, and Agfa.
Ctein is the ultimate "early adopter" of digital photography and printing, despite his passion for a classic color printing process like dye transfer. His career in electronic/digital imaging actually extends back further than the one as a professional photographer. He embraced digital photography's potential when most didn't imagine it was possible. He was designing digital cameras in 1971. In 1973 he made the first electronic prints directly from color negatives. In 1974 he was researching electronic photofinishing, of interest to a major film manufacturer. In the late 70s he designed sophisticated color printers and displays and consulted for Apple Computers on advanced display technologies.
Ctein has long been involved in photographic print preservation and permanence. As an established expert on B&W print permanence, his testimony has been sought in legal cases. Along with writing many articles and devoting a substantial portion of Post Exposure to photo preservation, he's been directly involved with photo restoration for many years.
Originally Ctein performed restorations with "wet" photographic methods; he's used dye transfer techniques to reconstruct full color prints from old photographic plates for the Smithsonian. His love for and involvement with dye transfer continues undiminished when it comes to printing his original photographs.
But, when it comes to restoring damaged photographs, Ctein found that nothing is superior to the computer. Safer, faster, and most importantly better, digital photographic restoration has captured his artistic soul.
|To see more of Ctein's fine photography please visit Ctein's Online Gallery|