Posts from the ‘Pinhole photography’ category

Pinhole photography classes in Bath

Pinhole photography class at the Royal Photographic Society in Bath

It is quite easy to think of photography as being a highly complex and technical process however, the principles of photography are very simple and a basic pinhole camera can be constructed with the types of items found in a typical rubbish bin. While the image quality of these cameras is basic by modern standards, there is a mystery to the pictures and in some situations, a pinhole camera can capture images beyond the ability of even the most sophisticated digital SLR. Throughout 2017, I will be running a series of one-day pinhole photography classes at the Royal Photographic Society’s (RPS) HQ in Bath.

The workshops introduce the fundamentals of photography and camera construction before the students make their own cameras and use them to undertake a set of tasks. The students will process their negatives in the darkroom.

If you have never seen a picture appear in a developing dish, this is one of the wonders of analogue photography.

During the class, we also look at contemporary photographers that are exploring the potential of pinhole cameras.

No prior knowledge of photography is required and all materials are provided.

For more information or to book visit the RPS website

Pinhole photography class at the Royal Photographic Society in Bath

Pinhole photograph taken with home-made pinhole camera


The abandoned car. 12 month pinhole picture of a car park

Extended (12 month) pinhole picture from Ditteridge near Bath

The owner of the car on the left of this picture must have reduced their carbon footprint massively as it has hardly moved over the 12 months of this exposure. On the right, cars appear only as faint, unrecognisable ghosts. One of the fascinating qualities of these images is that they record features which the passing observer wouldn’t notice. How would you know which car had been abandoned if you took a normal photograph of a car park?

The lines in the sky show the passage of the sun across the sky through the year.


Abandoned car at Cheney Court

Abandoned car at Cheney Court

This image is part of an on-going project at Cheney Court near Bath. More images from this project can be seen here.

Traditional black and white darkroom workshops and consultancy service

Many photographers feel that while their digital cameras produce amazing quality images when used correctly but believe the craft of the media has been taken from them and embedded in software applications. The darkroom is still a place where the true craft of photography can be found. Darkroom equipment which was once priced beyond the means of the typical enthusiast photographer can be picked up in online auctions for a tiny fraction of its original value. Sadly, courses on the subject are slowly disappearing as colleges convert their darkrooms into digital editing suites.

The day was jam packed and we both learnt a lot about various parts of traditional darkroom photography, the developing process, pin hole cameras, photograms and luminograms. Emma Hart, Sandy Secondary School, Bedfordshire

DeVere 504 enlarger

DeVere 504 enlarger

Traditional black and white photographic prints still have some significant advantages over their digital equivalents the most obvious being its archival quality. A properly processed and washed black and white print on fibre based photographic paper should still be around in a hundred years time. The digital equivalent would need regular conversion by the photographer and their progeny to be available for future generations.

Darkroom options

My permanent darkroom is just outside of Bath, it houses two enlargers, a Devere 504 covering a range of film formats including; 35mm, 6cm x 6cm, 6cm x 7cm, and 5″x4″ and an LPL C7700 enlarger for 35mm up to 6cmx7cm.

I also have a mobile darkroom to provide onsite training which can accommodate the smaller enlarger.

Due to the compact size of the portable darkroom it is normally suited to teaching smaller groups.

Nova Darkroom Tent, outside (left) inside (right)

Darkroom consultancy service

If you are planning to set up a darkroom or revive a darkroom which hasn’t been used for a while, I can provide onsite support to test equipment and materials, provide the guidance and training to get you up and running. If you do not have a darkroom, I can bring along a small portable darkroom, all I need is a nearby sink and electricity.

Nigel sparked not only confidence in us, in what we were going to teach the students but also newfound enthusiasm for the process. Whilst with us Nigel also spent time checking out, advising, and helping organise and clean our current darkroom that hasn’t seen much love. He advised us on best practice and items to purchase to make what we had already easier to use and more effective, he even brought along his own kit as examples and to demonstrate techniques to us. Emma Hart, Sandy Secondary School, Bedfordshire

Typical workshop content might include;

  • an introduction to darkroom equipment,
  • film processing demonstration,
  • camera-less photography, photograms, luminograms,
  • contact printing, enlargement, use of multigrade paper,
  • advanced darkroom technique, dodging and burning and split grade printing
  • experimental darkroom techniques.
Darkroom materials and equipment

Preparing a darkroom

Guidance on teaching darkroom techniques on GCSE, A level and BTEC course at schools and colleges

Having taught film and darkroom photography for some time, I recognise the common pitfalls encountered by new users and have developed a range of strategies to simplify learning. If you are introducing traditional analogue photography and darkroom techniques into your curriculum, I can help you to structure your sessions to support learning. Sessions also include a range of experimental darkroom techniques

Film photography

In addition to darkroom workshops, I can also provide training on using black and white film, choosing a camera, loading film, unloading film, processing options and film processing.

Hasselblad 500CM and Nikon FM

Film (analogue) photography

Pinhole photography and camera-less photography workshop

Learn how to create photographic images without the need for a camera. In this practical workshop, attendees will learn how to create photographic images without the need for a camera. They will also learn about the camera obscura before making their own pinhole cameras and using them to take a range of different pictures.  At the end of the session, they will be able to take their cameras home to take extreme pinhole exposures over several months in length.

Pinhole image Cheney Court

6 month pinhole Cheney Court near Bath


Prices start at £350 for a day for up to 5 attendees (2 if using the portable darkroom)

If you would like me to deliver an analogue photography workshop at your home or workplace give me a call or drop me an email.


One day Pinhole Photography workshop at Dyrham Park near Bath

On Thursday the 22nd of August I am running a one day pinhole photography workshop in the beautiful grounds of the National Trust’s Dyrham Park Estate.

Over the course of a day attendees will be introduced to the principles of photography (analogue and digital) before making their own working cameras and then taking pictures around the site.

The price for the day is a very reasonable £25 per person which includes all materials and entry into the grounds. Spaces are limited so book up early to avoid disappointment.

To book a place call 01225 892 374 or get more information please visit the Dyrham Park site by clicking here.

Pinhole image of the National Trust property at Newark Park, Gloucestershire

Pinhole image of the National Trust property at Newark Park, Gloucestershire


Its pinhole camera harvest time again!

It is this time of the year that I adopt my alter ego of The Pinhole Wizard and collect the pinhole cameras that I scattered across the country in the depths of Winter. These simple cameras take a single exposure over a full 6 month period. They  are exposed to all that the British Weather can throw at them. Many are full of rainwater, pollen, insects and sometimes air rifle pellets. Here is just one of the pictures ‘harvested’ this Summer from the National Trust’ Dyrham Park Estate near Bath. The image has lots of little spots from grass pollen, the lines in the sky is a record of the sun as it passes across the sky through the seasons. You can see more examples in my extreme pinhole photography page

If you are interested in a talk on the subject or a practical pinhole photography workshop send me an email or call on 07973 631185

6 month pinhole picture at Dyrham Park.

6 month pinhole picture at Dyrham Park.