The following newsletter is kindly provided by Michael Martin.  While intended for the members of the Monochrome Film Users Group, it should be of wider interest to others, including prospective members.

News from the Darkroom

The Monochrome Film Users Group

This group caters for those interested in capturing images on black and white film of different formats and darkroom techniques for processing and printing.

Meetings are normally held on the third Thursday of the month.

The next meeting is on Thursday 18th April at the home of Bill Harris, at 12 Kohekohe Road, Waikanae at 1930.

 Meeting Reviews

This is the first newsletter for 2013 and we have had two meetings covering a variety of topics which included:- keeping FB prints flat; pre-exposure; different prints from the same negative; using hypo clearing agent; comparison of different printing method; Rodinal Special developer examples; print and negative critiquing and discussion of our own and other exhibitions.


And mentioning exhibitions I think our group should be rightfully proud of our “Monochrome X 10” exhibition held at the Odlins Gallery from 16th to 27th of January. It was Odlins gallery most successful exhibition to date and we have been welcomed back to hold another one which we have agreed should be in approximately two years.

Many thanks to Iris and the Odlins Gallery supporters and all who helped, including ourselves, who made it work.

A lot of work but all agreed a worthwhile and rewarding result.

We now need to get into the darkroom and start on a fresh portfolio for the next exhibition.

Group Outing

Four of our group, Arthur, Brian, Fred, myself plus Tanya my daughter, met on the Wellington waterfront early Saturday morning March 16th for a photo shoot. An enjoyable couple of hours spent photographing the waterfront with just the right amount of cloud cover to make it interesting. I tested out my recently acquired 6×12 medium format back for my 4×5 Linhof, a format which I like and will spend more time pursuing. Our shoot was concluded with a cuppa and chat in a local cafe and then off home to develop the mornings results one of which is shown in this month’s images.

New Products

Fred brought to our attention a recently developed film developer called Spursinn HCD by SPUR from Germany. This can be used as a single or two bath developer and suitable for a wide range of films allowing push / pull development with a full range of tones and fine grain. There is an interesting Internet article about it on: –

This Month’s Images

This month’s first image was captured with a Nikon 35Ti on 35mm Kodak 400 TX film developed in Agfa Rodinal Special.

Peter Bush Opening the Monochrome X10 Exhibition - by Michael Martin.

Peter Bush Opening the Monochrome X10 Exhibition – by Michael Martin.

The second image was captured on 120 medium format Kodak TMY 400 T-Max with a 6x12cm back, attached to a 4x5inch Linhof camera and also developed in Agfa Rodinal Special.

Port Nicholson Marina

Port Nicholson Marina – by Michael Martin.

Food for Thought

I do not object to retouching, dodging, or accentuation as long as they do not interfere with the natural qualities of photographic technique.” – Alfred Stieglitz, 1864 – 1946, American photographer.

Look, See, Compose, Capture and most of all Enjoy.

Michael Martin.