Search for content, post, videos

The Silver Eye : Jacques Revon – Part one


Here is the first chronicle of The Silver Eye, it is devoted to Jacques Revon and his experiments with the silver image.

Jacques Revon embodies what the passion for photography can be, he is the perfect choice to open The Silver Eye. Actually, he will also be back next week for another text and portfolio of his photographic adventures.

Since the beginning of The Eye of Photography, Jacques has been sending us his images which we published numerous times. Back in 2016, his book  « Une histoire de la photographie de l’argentique au numérique, photographes… photographiés » was published by the Editions L’Harmattan.

Jean-Jacques Naudet introduced as follow the feature we published at the time and Jacques had a few words on the subject matter :

The book is titled: “A history of photography from film to digital, photographers… photographed”. It is published by L’Harmattan. It is signed by Jacques Revon.

It is terrific. A work crammed full of nostalgia and passion. The story of a real photographic fanatic from a family that’s also all contaminated by this love of film. The story of a wonder that’s still intact 67 years later.

These youthful loves that don’t fade are rather rare these days!

« The eye is listening!
The mind chooses the image, the fingers sharpen, the camera records.
The film or the card immortalises,
The print recreates.
Later… the photographer can still contemplate
and relive the moment when he shot.
To our eyes, this moment has become eternal. »
Jacques Revon



In 1983, my father a portrait photographer in Roanne retired after more than thirty years in the business. Before ceasing his activity, he entrusted me with blank glass plates from 1949 and also blank Kodak film plates from 1974, all 18X24 format of emulsions that normally had to be used and developed before the two respective dates.

Less than a year ago, I finally decided to use these film plans and glass plates that I had kept preciously. The shooting adventure began with my two old wooden cameras an 13X18 and 18X24 format and, what was my very big and beautiful surprise, that of noticing after development that these silver emulsions were still usable. So I took outdoor and indoor photographs in both formats, like the ones I’m attaching here. It’s a great adventure that I’m continuing, because I still have a few film and blank plates. Could my father have ever imagined all this?

I still continue to experiment with film imaging and very recently, because I found an old box of a few blank 9×12 plates that belonged to my maternal grandfather, a box of “étiquettes bleues(“blue labels”) plates from the Lumière house, glass plates dating from the beginning of the twentieth century.

© Jacques Revon

© Jacques Revon

© Jacques Revon

In this box, were well folded in a thick black paper some blank plates.

I therefore decided to continue the adventure and take these two photographs near my home in Daix with a Detective Favorite model camera that also belonged to my grandfather Jean.

© Jacques Revon

The result, a surreal image! strong emotions, telling me that my grandfather Jean, whom I hadn’t had time to know when I was little, had left in this little blue box 9X12 format, plates that he had not used, when he returned on leave on the continent during his military service in Morocco in 1910 and 1912. So what an emotion!

When I reread in a Lumière diary dating from 1909, that these plates could be kept for 20 years already, I tell myself that there really is a completely different story for film…these plates have therefore been dormant for more than 120 years…

© Jacques Revon

© Jacques Revon

Story of a birth hardly believable and yet, the reality is there, these glass plates were exposed and developed on January 31, 2023, “ordinary” silver gelatin-bromide plates says the text of the Lumière diary.

In my eyes, since yesterday, these two plates have become an extraordinary photographic story.

Jacques Revon
Daix, March 11, 2023.

Create an account or log in to read more and see all pictures.

Install WebApp on iPhone
Install WebApp on Android