Two years ago I wrote about a series of photographs by Richard Nicholson called “Last One Out” that documented the disappearance of the professional traditional wet darkrooms in London. Now, in a nicely complimenting project, John Cyr has been out and about photographing famous photographer’s developing trays.
Emmet Gowin’s developer tray by John Cyr
Back in June of last year I wrote about the death of London printer Bill Rowlinson. Now, Silverprint, one of London and the UK’s leading photo suppliers, has put a podcast on its website (hopefully the start of a series) of a conversation recorded by Martin Reed between Adrian Ensor and Bob Miller in which they discuss Bill’s unique methods and techniques and his career.
Admittedly, a little of the humour may be lost if you never knew Bill, but I was grinning all the way to the studio this morning listening to this. Amongst the topics they cover are his love for for freezing prints that he hadn’t yet finished, his cats, toning techniques that were downright dangerous, his house, its inaccessible darkroom (in many ways) and printing naked; all covered with much laughter and good humour. Keep in mind, if you do listen to this podcast and didn’t know Bill, the person they’re describing was one of the top professional printers in the UK. But I guess all us printers are somewhat off-beam, usually working in solitude and within our own small and unique cosmos.
An exhibition of Bill’s prints as well as Richard Nicholson‘s images of darkrooms Last One Out, Please Turn On The Light has just opened at Photofusion, and both Adrian and Richard Nicholson will be giving a gallery talk on December 8th.
Adrian Ensor is one of the finest printers in the UK and has been for over 30 years, having won Ilford’s Printer of the Year award twice. Bob Miller is a leading UK advertising and editorial photographer working on assignments worldwide since 1978.
Adrian Ensor and Bob Miller by Martin Reed