NOW showing at Blanco Negro: CAPRICE-JE NE SAIS QUOI


Blanco Negro is proud to announce our latest exhibition. A fusion between Emmanuel Angelicas & Caprice Hunter.

On display is a collection of Silver Gelatin and Colour photographs. The exhibition will be running from May 1st until the end of the month. Opening night is invitation only, so please RSVP for launch time.



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March / April Newsletter + Holiday News

Holiday dates – Exhibition news – New Shipment of FOMA
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Hurray for holidays!!! March 30th – 7th April

Yes, its that time of the year when I’ll be hitting the trail and getting some Vitamin D. I’ll be away from the darkroom from Thursday 30th until Friday 7th April. Looking forward to having the Mamiya 7 around the neck and shooting off some films.

An upcoming exhibition printed here at Blanco Negro. A collection of hand crafted B&W prints from Hong Kong in 1997. I shall be updating closer to the launch
Blanco Negro is excited to announce our first exhibition of the year. This is strictly RSVP only as we are expecting a good turn out. A blend of colour and B&W hand made prints.
More information will be in our next newsletter with even more exhibitions to be announced. Head On is not far away so i’ll be giving you the skinny on works in traditional B&W materials.

BLANCO NEGRO @ GOLD STREET STUDIOS. Check out this link if you are in Victoria or the surrounds and are interested in expanding your darkroom experience. I am running a few workshops from May. Of course you still have your very own experience in my Sydney darkrooms anytime by arrangement.

New Delivery of FOMA materials is just 24 hours away! Keep an eye on the website for all the latest stock arrivals.

Last by not least: for sale
Linhof Super Technica 4×5  with Schneider-Kreuznach Super Angulon 1:8/90 lens
Drop me an email and I shall forward you on to seller

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Photographic Alchemy. Not to be missed!


What an exhibition! I must say this this was one the finest examples of photographic printmaking I seen in many, many years. There is a diverse range of techniques on display, from Salt prints to Gravure, Platinum to Cyanotype, each process crafted with care and precision.

This exhibition is not to be missed.

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Wendy Currie – Photographer / Printmaker

About the works: femininity-and-memory-why-chrysotype-1

Catalogue of titles, prices and images. femininity-memory

I recently asked Wendy a few questions about her upcoming exhibition at Blanco Negro (18th October 2018, 6pm – 8pm). Please read below to view the answers.


Q1 How long did this exhibition take to finish.

About one year.

Q2 What were the steps involved? From negative to print.

I make large negatives using Photoshop and print out onto Folex inkjet Reprojet clear film (bit like overhead transparency film). Chrysotype process is another contact printing process ie. the negative is the same size as the finished image.

Chrysotype was first invented by Sir John Herschel in 1850’s, and 150 years later Dr. Mike Ware, a British chemist, spent a decade researching and refining this process.

I use Bergger watercolour paper for all my images, as it’s acid free, and totally archival.

Chrysotype uses 3 chemicals – gold chloride, ferric ammonium oxalate and liguand which combines all the chemicals together. After mixing the chemicals, I use a glass rod to spread the chemicals across the paper and then leave it to dry. I use a hairdryer for 5 – 10 mins to thoroughly dry the paper. This is an essential part of the process.

I place the negative in contact with the sensitized paper and expose in a vacuum UV lightbox for just over a minute.

After removing the negative, the paper is held over a hot water bath. The paper immediately absorbs the water vapours which affects the resulting colours.

The image is then put into a tray of citric acid & water, followed by further chemical baths and finally washed for 40 mins to an hour. The resulting colours vary from mushroom pinks to slatey blues are determined by exposure, temperature of the water vapour, developer and the humidity and temperature in the room. A tricky but beautiful process.


Q3 Did you make these prints in a home darkroom or elsewhere?

I made the prints in a friends darkroom


Q4 How did you learn this process, self taught or from a tutor?

I was fortunate enough to attend Dr. Mike Ware’s Chrysotype workshop when he was out in Australia at Ellie Young’s Gold Street Studios at Trentham East. Also, did a refresher course a year or so later with Ellie.


Q5 Why did you choose this process for the exhibition?

I work with many alternative photographic processes, but I feel that the soft pinks and slatey blues of the Chrysotype process really portray the femininity of the objects in this exhibition.


Thank you Wendy for these insights. I am looking forward to seeing you at the opening

Chris reid



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Photographic Alchemy Exhibition

A Salon of Traditionally Handmade Prints


Photographic Alchemy is a counter point to modern, instantaneous digital images. On show will be a salon of modern prints made by traditional nineteenth-century printing processes – salt, cyanotype, Van Dyke Brown, gum bichromate, platinum palladium, bromoil and with a nod to the modern – intaglio photopolymer. Each process takes many hours, even days, to produce an image which reflects the magic of light sensitive chemistry laid out on art papers.

Lyn Arnold, John Bardell, Susan Buchanan & Carolyn Pettigrew

When: 26 October – 13 November

Wednesday – Sunday 11am – 5pm

Where: The Art Space On the Concourse

409 Victoria Avenue Chatswood (Next to the box office)

Opening Sunday 30 October 3pm by Chris Reid

Willoughby Council is gratefully acknowledged for the provision of The Art Space on the Concourse.



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Femininity & Memory By Wendy Currie

Chrysotype can offer varying degrees of results and is considered to be one of the most difficult methods printing. It requires a tremendous amount of skill and meticulous work to achieve the kind of standard present in Femininity and Memory. Featuring her Mother’s personal belongings, Wendy aims to frame a sense a glamour and time. The use of ambient lighting in the prints present a distant memory and softness, without losing sharpness in the image.

Opening night

6pm Tuesday 18th October

Please email info@localhost to register your interest.

Head to Wendy’s website for more info.

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Printing a digital photograph

1870's Albumen contact print

The original 1870’s Albumen contact print. Notice the purple cast.

The untoned print from the digital enlarger on warm tone paper. Next is selenium toning.

The untoned print from the digital enlarger on warm tone paper. Next is selenium toning.

Partial selenium (1.5) toning. Approximately 90 seconds.
Partial selenium (1.5) toning. Approximately 90 seconds.

Partial selenium (1.5) toning. Approximately 90 seconds.

Full selenium 5 minutes.

Full selenium 5 minutes.


Final print!

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We’re closed on the 8th – 14th August

We’re on a short break next week so make sure you get your orders in before Friday 5th August. All orders placed in break period will be processed on return. We have a new shipment of Foma paper arriving the week after. For more details email info@localhost.

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In the darkroom with Stephen Dupont

In The Darkroom Series is a closer look at the craft in collaboration with some of my favourite photographers and artists. The series aims to demystify the fine art printing process and provide the technical detail of the body of work – Chris Reid

Stephen Dupont
Original Print. Please note these are test prints only.


This week I begin Stephen Dupont’s latest exhibition – White Sheet – showing at Stills Gallery at the end of the year. After the initial testing we have decided to run with my original ideas.

Paper Type: Foma 131 warm tone Gloss. 20/24” and 40/50” murals.
Chemistry: Ferric bleach bath, then fixed and washed.
Toner: Selenium at variable times – Dilution 1:15.

The steps:
#1 Dev + Stop + Fix + 1st Wash + Hypo Cleared + Final Wash
#2 Bleached + Washed + Re-Fix + 1st Wash + Hypo Cleared + Final Wash
#3 Selenium toned + 1st Wash + Hypo Cleared + Final Wash

The Foma 131 will receive a 5 minute development time. This gives me more room to play with the printing process as most of the negatives are being printed between Grade 4 to Grade 5. Not too much room to play!

Once the prints are dried after archival washing I will choose two from each image. These prints will then receive a short bleach bath. I use a fresh Potassium Ferricyanide and Potassium Bromide bleach at a very weak dilution. This is due to the paper being a Chloro-Bromide type, which is highly reactive to bleach baths. Once I am happy with the bleaching of the prints, they will be placed into a fixing bath to make them stable.

Stephen Dupont
Bleached and fixed print. Please note these are test prints only.

I decided not to use a Farmer Reducer bath as this is a permanent reduction step, irreversible if I over bleach the print, but by making separate bleach and fix baths I have a second chance (get out of jail free!). An over bleached print can be placed back into the developer and returned almost to it’s original density. The print can then be bleached again. The reason for the bleach bath is to create a greater dynamic tonal range.

Stephen Dupont
Selenium toned print. Please note these are test prints only.

After another archival wash sequence, the prints will be placed into a 1:15 Kodak Selenium toner. This will convert the print to a purple/magenta tone, again affecting the tonal range as well as the overall colour tone of the print. The reason for the toning is to help create a sense of unity between the images. There is a large selection of images from different locations around the globe as well as different subject matter. The Selenium toning will tie the prints together and make them easier on the eye as a whole, yet give each print its own unique identity.

Stephen Dupont
Comparison. Please note these are test prints only.
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Southern Exposure Exhibition


Twenty prints by twenty Australian photographers from the Blanco Negro Archive.

Photography has been my passion and obsession for over 27 years now. But the appreciation of the fine print or exceptional images has taken years of experience to be appreciated. My first ever purchase of a hand made photographic print was back in 1998, a Polaroid transfer. Yes, my first ever purchase was a Colour photograph!

Joyce Evans
© Joyce Evans 1995 – Tallaringa Springs Rainbow

Over the years I have been fortunate enough to print for some of Australia’s finest film photographers as well as some non professionals with a unique eye and style. I can appreciate the dramatic as well as the artist, but every print always leaves me with a sense of well being. Knowing I can gaze upon there beauty at anytime does not make them commonplace, it’s the opposite in fact. I can look upon a print I have hung on a wall for a decade and notice something new, a detail never noticed or a shade of tone yet to be appreciated. I feel very lucky to own this indulgence. The common thread for all my prints is that they have been exceptionally printed.

© Rennie Ellis 1973 – Sharpies, Melbourne

With thanks to fine art collectors who have passed on their knowledge and the teachers who have educated  me in the historical print techniques, I have come to understand certain nuances that each process possesses. I have always believed that to learn a new printing process now you must own a reference print – a fine example of the process that becomes embedded in the psyche. When we are all alone in the darkroom we can call up our memory for guidance, as a reference and comparison. To make sure the print is worth the effort and that the attributes of a fine print are obvious.

© Tracey Moffatt 1960
© Tracey Moffatt 1960 – Up in the sky

Just because a print is made by hand does not give it the right to hang on a wall. If only printmakers today were as conscientious as printmakers in the past – when only the best was acceptable. But when the prints are fine, then I’ll buy their work to add to my collection…

Southern Exposure Exhibition now showing.


Corrie Anconie
Ben Bohane
Anthony Browell
Adrian Cook
Stephen Dupont
Rennie Ellis
Joyce Evans
David Flanagan
Bob Kersey
Tracy Moffat
Nancy Montane
Shayne Pearce
L. Seigar
David Tatnal
Ioulia Terizis
Stephen Tester
Gordon Undy
Jozef Vissel
Tobi Wilkinson
Ellie Young


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In the darkroom with Sean O’ Connell

oconnell_sean_ripple torus discharge_small

In The Darkroom Series is a closer look at the craft in collaboration with some of my favourite photographers and artists. The series aims to demystify the fine art printing process and provide the technical detail of the body of work – Chris Reid

Artist statement

Forms of Energy builds upon the research undertaken during my doctoral degree at Sydney College of the Arts, 2012-2016. This work explores the tendency of knowledge and perception to favour edges and surfaces, and proposes that alternate modes of perception allow us to access hidden qualities of materials and forms, and reveal deeper relations and connections to the surrounding environment.


Using camera-less direct film techniques, high voltage electrophotonic imaging, reflected laser vibrational imaging, slow-motion 16mm moving film, paired mirror stereoscope images, and planar light cross-sectional photographs, this exhibition documents three simple physical experiments looking at the nature of material and form. These three experiments are the slow-motion filming of hollow metal boxes colliding in mid air, the tracking of smoke vortices in space through traditional and experimental techniques, and the imaging of spark discharges from the surfaces of sculpted forms direct onto film and through stereoscopic macro pairs. Through presenting these experiments in multiple forms of documentation, a range of visual qualities and impressions are built up of each event, favouring not just the usual traditional image of reflected light, but also experimental forms of documentation that reveal hidden flows of force and the internal structure of materials.


This body of work is part of a larger study that questions the nature of thought and vision to create simple world views built primarily through the surface of things.  The traditional role of photography, of capturing light reflected off the surface of objects and people, is challenged through this work. This is done so as to present alternatives and rich field of possibility, rather than to supplant any dominant ideology with a new paradigm. The ability of photography to present multiple perspectives is championed and extended, across a broad range of processes.

The Process

Firstly I had to covert Sean’s negatives into positives by making contact positives (a negative in contact with another sheet of film, thus creating a positive). I used graphic arts film for this process also know as “Line film”. This gave us the most contrast which was needed for Sean’s prints.

Once Sean had signed off on the positives we started the printing process. All the negatives were 10”/8” and all on Fomapan 200 I believe. We made the 30”/42” prints on the FB neutral tone matte surface (112) which complimented the high contrast images. Glossy would have been over the top with an extenuated contrast range.

With Sean in the darkroom with me for guidance (and he also gets to experience the process for more appreciation of the work required) we began the printing. After cutting the roll paper to size, I placed it onto an extended baseboard and held in place with magnets attached to metal set squares.

Prints were exposed between grades 3 – 4 for maximum tonality through the mid-tones. The paper was then processed in the following sequence:

#1 Developed in Fomatol P at 1:1 (5 litres) for 5 minutes. The prints are rolled through the chemistry in troughs. Fresh developer is used for each new image, approx. every 4 -5 pieces of paper.
#2  A brief wash in the water (helps remove the bulk of the developer), then the prints are rolled through the stop bath for 2 minutes. If I do not give a brief pre-wash, then the stop bath becomes exhausted very quickly.
#3 Fixed in Fomafix Liquid at 1:4 for 2 minutes.
#4 Brief wash for 3 minutes.
#5 Placed in a holding tank for about 1 hour before being laid flat onto cotton towels to dry

After viewing the prints Sean chose two from each image as finals. These prints then received the following process:

#6 Print are Hypo Cleared for 5 minutes.
#7 Wash number 1 for 5 minutes.
#8 Selenium toned to completion for about 6 – 8 minutes at 1:5 (strong).
#9 Prints receive another wash for 5 minutes.
#10 Then into the Hypo Clearing Bath for 5 minutes.
#11 Into the final wash for 60 minutes with intermitted agitation.

Check out Sean’s work at the exhibition below:


The works in this show tease out energetic transitions that emerge from material and process. Using purpose-built machines and the fine tuning of physical and chemical interactions these works make visible and audible the flow of energy across boundaries. Sound, space, electricity, photosensitive materials, lasers and machine movement are used in a play of possibilities that reveal resonant patterns and lines of force. These materials speak and interact to produce emergent order and prime forms. This work is not so much aimed at achieving an ideal image or form but is rather the product of working through an iterative process of technical permutations that shows thought operating with and through materials.

OPENING FRIDAY JULY 29TH, 6PM TILL LATE, continues until August 14th.


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Blanco Negro Recommends: Exhibitions

We work with some amazing artists and professionals at Blanco Negro and we want to make sure you get to see their work! There are also some great photographic exhibitions coming up this year that every kind of photographer needs to visit. Check them out below:

Constant Negative by Kenzee Patterson | Darren Knight Gallery NSW| 18 June – 16 July

Kenzee Patterson

Kenzee Patterson works with a variety of media and technologies to make his sculptures and prints. Sometimes using found objects to creating something completely new, such as the cast silver sculpture (pictured above) made from reclaimed photographic fix. A Constant Negative is a mix of installation, photographic print and video, creating a space that is intriguing and abstract, questioning our perception of colour and space.

The Colour Carbon by Ellie Young | Gold Street Studios VIC| 18 May – 10 July

Ellie Young

These intimate portraits of creatures of the natural world invite the viewer to see what is often unobserved. Delicate, fragile, caught in a fleeting moment of Ellie’s shutter, they achieve immortality in the permanence of the colour carbon photograph. Ellie chose this process for the surface relief making the wing structures appear sculptural.

Arcana by Anne LynamBarometer Gallery NSW| 27 July – 7 August

Anne Lynam

Originally from Dublin and now based in Sydney, Anne Lynam’s gritty, B&W photographs appear to come from a different time, like a film noir movie still – completely set up and strangley perfect. Lynam takes this idea further – her work in Arcana is dreamlike, a dusty memory that plays with what is real and what is shadow.

The Ebb and Flow of Encaustic by Various | Gold Street Studios VIC | 7 Sept – 30 Oct

Curated by Dianne Longley, each artist explores the zen nature of encaustic. The photographs have warm and softened beeswax (with damar resin) worked across the surface to create a beautiful translucence. The encaustic surface creates a compelling and mysterious aura through which the individual works resonate. Featuring Ollie Cool, Michelle Culprit, Jenny Hoffman, Aileen Hubbard, Dianne Longley, Christine Owen, Annette Potter Anne Richardson and Annette Soumilas.

Ollie Cool
Ollie Cool

American Portraits by Dianne Arbus ACT| National Art Gallery of Australia | 3 June – 30 October

Arbus is known for her iconic postwar America portraits and the NGA will be showing 36 rare vintage prints bought in 1980 and 1981 from her estate. The prints are shown alongside photographs by other artists who also sought to redefine the tradition of portraiture, and whose vision of America is also both challenging and moving.

Tough & Tender by Various | National Portrait Gallery ACT | 15 July – 16 October

If you make it to ACT you should definitely catch Tough & Tender while your at it. Featuring the Photographs of Warwick Baker, Larry Clark, Rozalind Drummond, Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe and Collier Schorr, the exhibition presents the complex representations of gender, masculinity and identity.

White Sheet by Stephen Dupont | Stills Gallery NSW | 9 November – 10 December

Stephen Dupont White Sheet
Stephen Dupont

Stephen Dupont’s Generation AK: The Afghanistan Wars 1993 – 2012 is available in store including a special collectors edition and original version signed by the artist. Check it out here.

The award-winning photographer and documentary filmmaker is currently working on his next exhibition titled White Sheet. Definitely one to keep in your diary. More info to come.

Dupont won both the Australian Photobook of the Year Award and the POYI Best Photography Book Award  for the powerful body of work.

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