Daguerreotypes are the second oldest and the first commercially viable kinds of photographs. Louis Daguerre honed the process of freezing a camera obscura image on a polished silver plate fumed with iodine in the late 1830s. The process was largely replaced soon afterward by ambrotypes, tintypes, and other formats. Today, however, there is a dedicated group of artists and craftspeople that still create these exquisite images.
For several years I was well known in the daguerreotype circle but let me assure you that's not a large club. I was known as a creator of daguerreotypes and cases. I spent quite a lot of time and money to learn the craft and I enjoyed every minute of it. I collaborated with great artists, taught a few workshops, exhibited at a little museum, and even made some images for a few celebrities! You may notice that I'm using the past-tense, however, because I no longer make daguerreotypes.
I outlined the process, in brief, of the Becquerel method of creating the images at Instructables so if you're craving information I suggest having a look there. Contemporary practitioners congregate at cdags.org.
If you would like to learn how to make these exquisite images for yourself then I heartily endorse the workshops led by Jerry Spagnoli (Becquerel method) and Mike Robinson (Mercury method). There are other teachers but I have personally taken courses from these two men and learned a great deal from each.
This page serves as reference point for Internet archaeologists finding deep, old links to my site. I still have a passion for daguerreotypes but I've decided to pursue other mediums.
I still have all of my equipment, after all. ;-)