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It was no longer necessary to visit a studio that specialized in the tiny likeness.
Gem portraits were commonly stored in special albums with provision for a single portrait per page. Some Gems were cut to fit lockets, cufflinks, tie pins, rings and even garter clasps. Itinerant photographers frequently brought the tintype to public gatherings, such as fairs and carnivals.
The technique of making such enlargements were so complicated that few photographers had the proper skill to make an enlargement from a standard studio negative.
The larger size created new problems of photographic quality.Similar to daguerreotype in assembly of parts: 1-Disadvantages of ambrotypes: 1. sold for a penny or less, making photography universally available. It is sometimes confused with ambrotypes and daguerreotypes, but is easily distinguishable from them by the fact that a tintype attracts a small magnet. The earliest tintypes were on heavy metal (0.017 inches thick) that was never again used.A very slow (up to 20 sec.) exposure, compared to 2 sec. The cost of an image at the time the process became obsolete was about 25 cents. They are stamped "Neff's Melainotype Pat 19 Feb 56" along one edge.Apparently Talbot (the inventor) did not fully realize the importance of washing his prints long enough to remove all the residual chemicals, or perhaps his fixing was inadequate. Instead of a glass cover, the photographer covered the tintype with a quick varnish to protect any tints or colors added to cheeks, lips, jewelry or buttons.Either fault leads to the same result: fading image, discoloration, etc. Popularity: The tintype was very popular during the Civil War because every soldier wanted to send a picture of himself with his rifle and sword home.