Back to photo list

Relievo Ambrotype

Relievo Ambrotype
The picture above is taken automatically from, if there is something related to the picture please visit and contact
A 1/6 plate relievo ambrotype by Anglo-American photographer W. Harwood.
The relievo ambrotype was introduced by a Glasgow photographer named Urie about 1854. He painted the back of the figure and any furniture with a black paint, and scraped away the background. Then he put a piece of glass and a piece of white card behind, which made the portrait stand out with a relief effect.
The backmark of the London photographer Harwood notes that he was also of Broadway, New York. Interestingly the preserver reflects his dual allegiance, with crossed Union Jack and Stars and Stripes at the top, and also with American eagles and British lions featuring in the corners. Oddly, I can't find any trace of this photographer in either Craig's Daguerreian Registery, or in PhotoLondon. If anyone could find a reference for his career I would be most grateful.
Date: 2010-01-25 08:34:36

Visit :


LJMcK 2010-01-25 10:11:38
She is very beautiful. I am going to have to check my ambros for this technique. Do you know what she is holding in her hand? Her jewerly is amazing. Very well-to-do Lady. Thank you for the relievo information. Love, Jamie
art-e-ology 2010-01-25 16:20:07
Wow! what a nice ambrotype!
I have never heard of this technique used before. Very interesting.
johncurtisrea 2010-01-25 17:31:46
She is so beautiful :-)
sweltering ticket 2010-01-25 18:47:14
@Jamie - I think she's likely to be holding either a watch or a pencil attached to the chain.
It is also worth looking again at your own collection as many things such as the relievo technique often pass sellers by - I bought this on eBay where it was listed as a tintype....

@JCR - My photo here actually doesn't do this image (or its subject) justice. Some of these early ambrotypists were certainly highly skilled artists - they sometimes managed to produce photos which could rival even daguerreotypes in their clarity and beauty.
LJMcK 2010-01-26 12:10:30
Interesting brooch, can't figure out what's inside, almost looks like a portrait of a flying saucer, and she might be holding a miniature astrolabe to help her find the ship in the heavens. Just a guess.
garden sculptor 2010-12-20 16:36:30
Gran Testimonio Histórico
Great Historical Testimony
 ºNEORETROºpor druidabruxux6quot; height=160
Jose Javier Martin Espartosa 2010-12-22 11:52:30
Lovely image, found not though Flickr but through a Google search for Relievo Ambrotypes - not the first time that I've been directed straight back to one of my Flickr contacts! The description adds so much to the image - I confess I'd probably never have noticed that lovely preserver.

It has been suggested that one of my images - - is a relievo. Would welcome your thoughts.
whatsthatpicture 2011-12-29 09:51:58
Hi, I found a relievo last week at an antiques fair in Cornwall - nowhere near as nice as this one, but advertised as a daguerreotype so I put the dealer straight and negotiated a hefty discount. She needed a bit of a clean up (the girl in the image image, not the dealer!) so I posted a set of pictures showing the various elements and especially the carefully painted reverse.

whatsthatpicture 2012-09-02 19:04:23
[] Nice example :-)
LJMcK 2012-09-04 11:10:46

Members of | Partnered with
Powered by | Promoted by

Visit Archipelago Country, A Tropical Paradise In The World : and