The Autumn 2020 Complete Photographic Process for B&W


The Autumn 2020 Complete Photographic Process for B&W

from 150.00

Instructor: Bruce Barnbaum

September 13 - 18, 2020

Workshop Fee: $1425 (includes complete lab fees)

Deposit amount: $150 (non-refundable)

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Top Photograph -- Barnbaum - Elegant Dune, Death Valley

At Bruce’s home/studio/darkroom, Granite Falls, Washington

Workshop Fee: $1425 (includes complete lab fees)

This workshop, based at Bruce's home/studio combines both field and traditional darkroom aspects of photography. The Ansel Adams Zone System of exposing film negatives is fully explained in an easy, understandable way, and then put to immediate use. You’ll see how simple it really is, and after putting it to use outdoors, you’ll develop your exposed negatives in Bruce’s darkroom with his help and guidance. Bruce then shows simple, straightforward methods of printing negatives that give you exceptional control. Then you can print your own negatives—either those exposed and developed earlier in the workshop, or those created prior to the workshop that you brought with you. At the end Bruce shows how to mount and spot prints, creating the finished print for display purposes. By going through the entire photographic exposure, from the Zone System to the display print, the workshop truly deserves the title of “The Complete photographic Process.”

Through his own photography, his books, and his workshops, Bruce is recognized as a leading figure in photography today, and is in demand for his clear, understandable way of explaining the thinking and methodology of photography, both outdoor in the field, and indoors in the darkroom. His acclaimed book, “The Art of Photography,” has been translated into nine languages, including German, Russian, Chinese, Spanish, and most recently, French, indicating the universal appeal and demand for his understanding and clear teaching. The complete photographic process is taught in depth and easily understood in just six days.

The triumph of this workshop is the complete integration of the photographic process: from finding a scene that excites you (your discovery), to envisioning the final photograph based on that scene, exposing and developing the negative, and then printing that negative with the qualities you want your print to have (your creativity). Bruce will work with you on all aspects of this: including a day of demonstrating darkroom printing techniques that will rocket you ahead in your learning curve toward the print you want. The days are long, but so filled with both information and fun that you'll hardly notice. You'll get wonderful refreshments throughout the day prepared by Bruce's lovely wife, Karen, and fabulous breakfasts that she prepares each morning. Their dogs make the week even more pleasurable.

The most important part of photography is seeing light as the camera sees it, and the second most important part is carrying that seeing through to a final image that conveys your thoughts to others. Whether your route is traditional film-based photography or digital photography, this workshop will dramatically enhance your seeing, and your ability to carry it through to the final print. You'll learn about strong seeing, about light, about effective composition, about creating a mood and interpreting a scene to turn it into your own vision. You'll learn how to express yourself better about the world that is photographically important to you, and how to create whole new worlds. 

Traditional film has an enormous brightness range, but few users are aware of it (nor are many instructors). Today's traditional b&w darkroom offers astounding control via simple but powerful tools to bring your vision to completion. Furthermore, it’s all very intuitive. By taking full advantage film’s extraordinary range and the darkroom’s immense power and flexibility, together with the use of a few simple but extremely exacting darkroom tools for critical burning and dodging, these hands-on workshops explore all aspects of the modern b&w process, from negative exposure and development to fine printing of the negative. Our emphasis remains focused on one central goal: teaching photography as an artistic, expressive form of non-verbal communication. You’ll find it to be remarkably straightforward and intuitive, despite the general idea that it is complicated. It isn't. It's a far more direct, intuitive approach than digital offers.

You'll learn how to most effectively expose and develop your negatives to control their contrast range and make your prints glow. You'll see demonstrations of printing by a master printer using the highest quality variable contrast papers, including his unique burning and dodging tools (which you then can make yourself at almost no cost). You’ll learn about potassium ferricyanide reducing—bleaching—for refined control and additional print brilliance. And you'll produce them yourself because the workshop is hands-on: you print your own work in Bruce's fully equipped, state-of-the-art darkroom with suggestions and direct help from him throughout. We do not know of another workshop that offers this opportunity. Demonstrations will show selenium toning of prints, full archival processing of prints, plus mounting and spotting of prints for home, gallery or museum display. And you’ll discover one other thing: your own darkroom becomes your refuge, a contemplative place conducive to creating fine art.

Workshop details: 

The workshop begins on Sunday morning, September 13 after breakfast—prepared and served by Bruce lovely wife, Karen—at their home. We request participants arrive  Saturday, September 12 to join us that evening at 7:30 p.m. for dessert, wine, an informal get-together to meet one another and see the facilities we’ll be using during the workshop. The workshop runs through Friday afternoon, September 18, closing at about 1:00 p.m. Please plan your travel to allow full participation in this workshop. 

Workshop Setting and Accommodations:

The workshop couldn't be in a more beautiful setting. An hour's drive north of Seattle, and into the North Cascade Mountains (a strikingly rugged range) Bruce and Karen’s home is surrounded by over a hundred acres of forests, meadows and marshes, with immediate access to forest and mountain hiking trails on U.S. Forest Service land in the surrounding mountains. Participants can stay in Bruce and Karen's home or guest house, plus camping on their property, at the nearby Paca Pride Guest Ranch, or at U.S. Forest Service campgrounds nearby. 

Once you return your application, we send you complete information about all accommodations. We'll make all reservations on your behalf, beginning the Saturday night prior to the start of the workshop, and running through Thursday night prior to the close of the workshop on Friday afternoon.

If you have questions concerning this workshop (or any other on this program) please email Bruce Barnbaum at

To register for this workshop via the website, please pay the full amount ($1,425) or the non-refundable deposit ($150) using your Visa or Mastercard credit card (sorry, no other credit cards). If you register with a deposit, the full payment is due 6 weeks prior to the workshop.

Alternatively, to register by regular mail:

Download the workshop application to your computer from here: 

Workshop Application.doc  or a PDF version: Workshop Application.PDF

Print it out, fill it in, and send it to:

Photographic Arts Workshops

P.O.Box 1791

Granite Falls, WA 98252

If you have questions that requires immediate answers, email Bruce at or phone him at (360) 691-4105.