RE: eggs for albumen printing/ was "Apis or not Apis)
On Fri, 8 May 2009, Don Bryant wrote:
My hunch, from having watched the process, was that the dried egg white worked fine, in fact possibly better, since you buy a tin of it, and once it's tested the rest will be the same, while each egg (especially of free range) is likely to be different....My question to Ms. Zimmerman was serious as I thought her answer was, even though there were quite a few giggles and quips from the audience. If her answer wasn't made in jest then she uses eggs laid by free range chickens. She lives out in Taos and I can see where she could have enough room to raise her own chickens with a steady egg supply except during the winter when production will naturally decrease. Perhaps she was being polite and humoring me. And by winter she probably has a nice stockpile of albumen salted away. I don't eat store bought eggs whole or dry. I have no evidence to the contrary but it just seems to me using a product with all natural ingredients would be better for albumen coating rather than eggs produced by chickens that receive hormones in their feed to make them lay eggs.
Another hunch, for what it's worth, from what I've read, is that these farming, animal-raising practices are more harmful to the environment than to us personally. Or at least to me, since I don't eat that many eggs, or that much of any particular meat source so treated -- but the runoff into our water sources, and the probable rise of resistant bacteria from all those antibiotics, etc., etc., are ominous. I figure also that living so close to New Jersey (heh heh) with the prevailing winds carrying all that pollution, not to mention the exhaust from traffic right outside our windows, makes a little something in the eggs seem de minimus.
I believe you... but if I have to go outside the neighborhood to buy a dozen eggs (etc.) -- well, it's tough enough to get into the studio as it is.Free range eggs taste better, cook better, look better, have thicker shells, and have a greater economic value to their producers (not the chickens of course.) Our local Korean, Chinese, and Russian communities prize free range eggs and are willing to pay a premium price for them.
Actually, I believe it's legal in much of NYC to have as many as 6 chickens... tho the noise from a rooster might bring neighbor retaliation.Local jurisdictions all over the country have had to enact new laws to prevent city dwellers from raising their own fowl. This is in part due to growing ethnic populations that prefer their own chicken and eggs than what one can purchase through grocers.
Again, I believe you, but the time and trouble to buy what I have to travel for, is what's too costly. As for eating chicken, I doubt it has any more hormones, antibiotics, etc. than beef or for that matter pork, and at this point in time, the "experts" tell us, chicken is much healthier than beef -- less saturated fat, especially if you remove the skin.I don't know if you eat chicken Judy but free range chickens have much better flavor and texture. Same for other fowl, even quail. Just ask any black snake, raccoon, fox, or opossum, they all prefer free range eggs!
Which is to say, life is full of choices... the greater evil in my life would be spending yet more time and energy to feed my face. I need to feed my art.
Quail eggs are small, and the dried eggwhites worked fine... But there are chemicals, pollutants, all over the place in all of photography. I'd say that whatever they put in chicken feed is the least of it....Perhaps albumen made from quail eggs would work better than chicken albumen. But I confess, I'm not an albumen printer so my thinking is just conjecture.