Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

This is a forum to share experiences and ideas about holography.

Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by ErichRose » Fri Dec 29, 2006 6:17 am

My involvement in holography goes back to the very early eighties. I had been messing around with little HeNe lasers and decided to try my hand at holography. Well my efforts with the little Metrologic kit were pretty dismal. I didn't totally lose interest but everything got put on hold as I finished college and headed for NYC and a new job. Well my first job sucked but the second one was much better. I had studied Industrial Design and found myself going from designing coffee makers to a much more interesting career in exhibit design, specifically hands on science. I found myself in contact with all sorts of interesting folks one of whom was a part time holographer (Bruce Pollack(sp?) you still out there?) who introduced me to the New York Holographic Laboratory. I took several courses taught mostly by Dan Schweitzer and to some extent Sam Moree. Dan, along with being a great artist and holographer, was a brilliant teacher. His mix of the technical and the practical really helped me figure the whole thing out. It just took off from there. I was booking weekend lab time about every month and experimenting with all sorts of reflection and transmission formats. I especially liked trying the varios pyrogallol mixes and the extereme color shiftings trying to get "bright" holograms in deep blue.

As I spent more time around the lab I met a number of wonderful folks. Lord help me I can't remember everyone's name. Those were some smoke filled years. But I did find myself working a bit with others: I made some of Sam Moree's sculpted aluminum mounts and I worked a bit with Rudie Burkhout helping him build equipment for his lab.

During that time I made several editions of simple single beam & multiple exposure-two-color holgrams that I considered more as "craft" pieces than art. But the gift shop at the Museum of Holography was interested enough to sell several dozen pieces one year. They were mostly abstract pieces but each was mounted on a handmade acrylic frame painted and shaped in some fun way to work with the image. Dan, Sam and Rudie all gave me grief for selling them for so little. They felt I was undercutting the market. But my pieces were just craft objects not the real art that they were producing. (if any of you out there own one I would love to hear how they have held up.)

Well that went on for maybe 8-10 years and then my situation changed. I got married and New York Holographic labs moved. The old lab that was under the Quad Cinema on 13th street in Manhattan was convienient for me and had the full set up I needed. When they moved down to 3rd street it just didn't flow for me. Life somehow became too busy for holography and the lasers and optics all were packed away.

Well that brings me to the present. I am now living and working in Austin, Texas and after the move found myself one day sitting out in the bright Texas sun looking through several (4-5) of those old black plastic Agfa boxes that the 4x5 plates came in. I still have dozens of unmounted plates both reflection and transmission. My 11 year old daughter was fascinated and asked for a bunch of the old "cereal box" rainbow holograms that I had also collected. So now the juices are flowing and I think I may be ready to set up my own table and start back in. I am certainly hoping that this forum will be a great resource as I try to retrace my steps and as well as catch up on all the new materials and methods. I look forward to the exchanges that will occurr and the knowledge and excitement that this avocation offers. Thanks for letting me join.


Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by MichaelH » Fri Dec 29, 2006 10:38 am

Welcome to the forum!

You'll have to come up to the Dallas area sometime so Andres and I can make sure you're well and truly hooked again!


Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by GraySoul » Fri Jun 08, 2007 6:32 pm

I've been interested in lasers since I saw a research lab at the University of Virginia when I was 12. I do electronics as a hobby and I go to surplus auctions, where I have found lots of laser and optics toys. My best find was a pallet with a 2.5 Watt argon and a flash pumped doubled YAG for $100.00.

I have been interested in holography as a viewer/collector since I can remember... there was a big show at the Richmond science museum in the late 80s with the large feline and the microscope that you could look through... anyone know more details about that show? Might have been Russian.

Some years ago I bought a roll of Agfa holotest film off eBay and was over at a friend's house (he's here as Tommy) trying to get holograms out of it. After instigating him to set up his laser stuff from high school and shooting a few not-so-rewarding holograms, he has gone on to get a real table, his own 315M, and shoot on glass plates with great results. I still have many meters of the old film left and I hope to make some better holograms with it once I get the big HeNe working.

I'm currently working on a 6-foot SP HeNe head, a 60X Argon, and a Coherent 315M. The 315M is running on a 215M analog controller, so I'm working on building a thermal controller for the resonator TEC. I decided to join this forum so I can offer the 315M here when I get it done... I would much rather sell it to someone who will appreciate its holographic quality since it's not going to impress anyone with raw power. ;)

I'm also still helping with Tommy's setup... next project is to render some scenes in POV-Ray for a multiplex hologram.

-Dan Barlow

Dominik Hangleiter

Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by Dominik Hangleiter » Sun Jun 17, 2007 7:23 pm

I have recently become involved in holography in context with a research project together with two mates of mine. With our topic "Digital holographic data storage in Spiropyran" we are planning to take control of the world's storage. Jokes.. .it's simply for a competition.

Anyway SP being a photochrome is quite well suited for reversible (!!!) holography as quite a high resolution can be reached :). What we are trying to do is therefore to achieve as good a qualitiy as possible with as little $$$ as possible. We've already got some support from leading companies in the laser business - coherent is lending us a c315m, laservision gave us some safety goggles and solvay might be giving us our chemicals. Unfortunately this means the expectations as well as our own (especially my own) demand for this project are set quite high.

While at the moment we are still quite into the theory - using the Kramers-Kronig-Relation to calculate the necessary change of refractive index of SP for our reading process, looking at red-shifting SP so that the absorption spectrum fits our lasers, thinking about multiplexing and things as well as really getting into computing for the digital readout - we are about to start off with setting up our basis and test it with a michelson interferometer.

When not researching about holography I am a keen guitar player, enjoy some Jazz when relaxing, dance and (mens sanis in corpore sana) love going for a run or an early swim. :D I might also be talking to my mates in NZ, where I've spent the best year ever.

This forum is a fantastic option for us to get some response to our weird ideas. Thanks for giving us the chance!!!



Justin W

Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by Justin W » Tue Nov 13, 2007 5:30 pm

Hi all!
I'm Justin, and I reckon it's about time I introduce myself...
I'm your basic nerdly cat to whom science is the language of existence. I embrace my wave-like nature and do not resent the fact the the whole of my lifetime will be nothing but a hiccup in the infinite :wink:
I have all the technical skills to be a great writer, but my overactive imagination refuses so far to gel the great American novel, and instead rides photons into the land without time, leaving me pondering physical reality instead of developing characters and plotlines.
I became interested in holography after waking up one morning and wondering "what is a hologram and how is it made?"... Turns out my curiosity was actually related to volumetric displays - the Princess Leia "hologram". A quick session on Y! Answers got me a cut-n-paste from Wikipedia, describing of course a pair of laser beams forming an interference pattern. A passing familiarity with the Young's Two Slit experiment placed this concept within familiar territory.
I reacted to the description of a split beam hologram with the thought "I can do that!". Shortly after moving into the apartment where I now reside, I purchased a generic DPSS green laser module and a couple of optical component "grab bags". I couldn't stop playing with that laser (it was cool), and slapped together a few interferometers on my coffee table. Fascinating!
Shocking discovery - real newsflash here - turns out you can't make a hologram without a recording medium for the fringes.... I survived the dismay and decided to pick up some VRP-M and JD-2. For the life of me-ee I could not make a single-beam reflection on my coffee table. At this point everyone I asked politely informed me that it was unlikely that my laser was appropriate for holography, but I plugged my fingertips into my ears and hummed loudly until they were through. Just when all hope seemed lost, I made a single-beam transmission with weird stripes all over the surface of the image. I was suprised without being stunned. Of course it should work - I was following the basic rules (a reference beam and an object beam).
Since then I have moved my operation into a Tupperware sandbox . Utter lack of success with Denisyuk exposures started me down the path of the split beam. A chipped corner cube from one of the grab bags, when shot in the back, turned out to be a great beam splitter (no edges parallel - stray reflections go their own way), and a few dim off-axis reflection holograms showed. They brightened considerably after I slid a pair of dollar store swim rings under my sandbox, but were still plagued with sliced bread, and when that CLM module finally took a dump I lined myself up with a JDS microgreen (my sweet sweet baby). I had to screw up my face and concentrate real hard to imagine any use for a transmission hologram, until I finally attempted copying one into a reflection hologram.
Wow. Did I mention wow? I didn't know a reflection gram could be that bright! To this point, I have been shooting with a reference beam from the side, but now intend to get a mirror overhead for my masters so that - heheh - any dangling elements of my objects won't appear wind-blasted.
I love this holography thing because it really tests my mettle. While deeply technical this craft also requires a strong creative element and truly takes problem-solving to the next level.


Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by JohnFP » Thu Nov 15, 2007 7:37 pm

Justin, I have to say I tooootally enjoyed reading your intro.

Justin W

Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by Justin W » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:53 pm

Thanks, brother.
I've been posting on the forum for a little while now, and it seemed time to go ahead and say hi.
It's a cool crowd, and I certainly have fun hearin' what folks have to say. Perhaps there will come a time in the future when I have contributions to make, and can balance my holographic kharma some...


Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by BobH » Thu Nov 15, 2007 11:53 pm

Welcome! Sometimes the best contribution is a fundamental question asked from a unique perspective.

Colin Kaminski

Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by Colin Kaminski » Fri Nov 16, 2007 10:39 pm

BobH wrote:Welcome! Sometimes the best contribution is a fundamental question asked from a unique perspective.
You are a wise man Bob. :)


Introductions - Everyone please chime in!

Post by kate » Thu Jan 03, 2008 6:34 am

Hi everyone. I thought I would introduce myself. I have been reading here for a few days through some of the old posts and find them very informative. I am not new to holography but it has been 15 years since I was making them. Sometime around 1980 I saw my first holograms at a traveling exhibition that came to the art department when I was in college. It included some moving holograms such as the famous "Kiss" and a locomotive emerging toward you from a tunnel with sound effects playing. It really hooked me into the notion of being able to make holograms myself someday.
It was another 10 years before I had the resources and time to be able to try it myself. At that time I built a 2' x 4' table on an old desk in the bedroom of my apartment. It was just a sheet of 3/16" steel with pieces of angle iron epoxied to the back to stiffen it and set on top of sorbothane hemispheres. I bought a 6mw HeNe laser and accumulated various optics. I made reflection holograms on 2.5” Agfa plates. Later, I improved my setup to include 2 object beams and a spatial filter made from a microscope positioning stage.
A couple of years later changes in my life got in the way, interrupting my explorations. Since I moved from that apartment, I have never even unpacked the equipment. Lately I have been thinking of getting back to it and building a larger table so that I can work with more sizes and try new things. In my basement now, there is a room I can dedicate to this about 6' wide by 22' long with a concrete floor and access to plumbing nearby so I am now planning how I can make the best use of it.
This is the first time I’ve communicated with anyone else that has an interest in making holograms and the conversations here already have my head spinning with new information and ideas. I am sure I will have a lot of questions soon.