Darkroom Download Vol. 1

Welcome to my first post in many a moon… I find it a challenge to write about my doings in my darkroom, especially via social media etc, but here it goes.

Firstly, “Thank You” to everyone who touched base regarding the darkroom and myself during the fire season. We were very lucky indeed to escape major damage. Without the hard work of RFS and local residents, things may have been a whole lot worse.

Below are a few pics from the just above the darkroom and also from the upper Boree Track / Upper Yengo Creek Road looking West towards Yengo Mountain, about 20 minutes from the the gate.

Since the New Year, printing commissions have been fairly consistant. I recently worked on a series of test prints for Jo Cripps from Salt & Silver studio. On this project, Jo shot a number of different film stocks and hand processed them in various developers. A notable image was on the Foma Retropan 120, beautifully complimented by the tree dappled light. The use of Pyro developer also gave extra punch to some of the other images where the contrast was fairly flat. Jo isn’t shy of experimenting, which is useful for film photographers. For this project, our aim was to create a series of sample prints for the various silver gelatine printing options I can offer. All up, it was 4 days in the darkroom with about 20 odd tests, culled to a presentable 13 finals that made it to the press. These consisted of Lith prints, Liquid Emulsion and Silver gels. Toining options included Gold + Lith, and warm tone paper. Thiocarbamide on the neutral tone 112 and Selenium with the 111 gloss 131 warm tone. Finally a few Liquid Emulsion on watercolour paper. I also used different borders for added variety.

Detailed info is below, if you can be bothered. Otherwise skip to the pics.

Lith Prints: Printed onto Fomatone 132 & 131 warm tone paper. Developed in Kodalith A&B developer for approx. 6 – 8 minutes. Toning: Gold only ( GAF 231)

Liquid Emulsion: Printed onto Canson 230 gms watercolour paper. Double coated over 48 hours. Printed on day 3 and developed in Fomatol P 1:1 for 3 minutes. No toning

Silver Gelatine: Printed onto Fomabrom 112 & 111 neutral tone stock and 131 & 132. Prints were developed in Fomatol P for 3 minutes at 1:2. Toning of neutral tone stock consisted of a bromide bleach till complete, then after washing toned on Thio. #3 formula. Another print was Selenium toned for 3 minutes @ 1:10 dilution. Warm tome paper received Gold toner + Selenium, Gold only and Selenium only.

In other news, a new delivery has arrived from Foma which has replenished most of my stock. Back in town is the Liquid Emulsion and most “out of stock” paper. I still have a few items to stock, so if you would like anything special ordered, such as Graded papers, please drop me an email.

More stuff. Foma has announced that there will be a 5 %  increase to most of the product range, 3% to some other items. With the current exchange rates declining and freight costs increasing, I feel the necessity to adjust the current prices presently listed on the website FOR NEW STOCK ONLY. It has been a while since I have done this mind you, though it’s never easy….

If any readers have news regarding upcoming exhibitions etc, please drop me an email. Being off grid in the bush, I don’t get much photographic news. But I do get WiFi.

Lastly… Over the last few months I have made the effort to create some photographs just for me. Below are a few samples of works in progress. It has been a real learning curve, especially with the capture side of things. I am more a printer, than a photographer. But I hope with more testing I’ll get the images just how I want them.

Chris Reid, Laguna 2325



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