Richard Rallison

During the 70’s, Richard Rallison formed a company called “Electric Umbrella”. He made hologram apothecary jars and hologram glass discs that were used as key, chains, pendants and other forms of jewelry. He was a holography pioneer and successful. Electric Umbrella was a profitable and provided and income for Richard and his employees.


Richard made his holograms using Dichromated gelatin. Before forming Electric Umbrella, he perfected the process in a make-shift lab that he set up in his Los Angles apartment. Using Knox unflavored gelatin, a laser that he borrowed from his employer, Hughes Laser, and Isopropyl alcohol that he heated up on hot plates. He had to move a few times during this process when his landlord would evict him after each fire.

Electric Umbrella outgrew Richard’s basement and he moved it into a building that he had built in Draper Utah. The name was changed to IDC (International Dichromate Corporation) In 1980 Lee Dickson from IBM contracted with Richard to develop the holographic bar code scanner. A new branch was formed making holographic optical elements to manipulate light for photonics. By 1984 Richard had stopped making pendants and display holograms and formed Ralcon to concentrate on Holographic Optical Elements and large format gratings.

In 2002 Wasatch Photonics was incorporated. Lee and Richard are two of the founders. Richard passed away on September 16, 2010 and Lee Dickson passed away on January 11, 2015. They are greatly missed.

Richard gives his own account of his exploits in this pdf file entitled “The History of Dichromates”.

Here is a complete list and access to Richards White papers.