PDN Photo of the Day

Developer Trays

Pictures were not always “made” instantly by clicking the shutter button and uploading them to computers or mobile devices. Taking the picture was only the first step in the picture-making process. A photographer’s life consisted of hours, days, weeks, months spent in a very  dark room filled with chemicals that expose and fix their images to paper. An essential tool in that process is the developer tray – the vehicle that holds the various liquids that develop, stop, and fix your exposed image and create a print. It has been a very private place for the image-maker, which is why master photography printer John Cyr‘s new book, Developer Trays, is such a treat. Beautifully documented trays from many noted photographers are included in the 144-page, hardcover book available now through powerHouse books.

“Each tray’s physical appearance is a direct reflection of its treatment: the years of usage, the maintenance of it, the chemicals in the developer, and the level of print agitation. Every accumulated tong mark, silver deposit, and chemical stain seen in these photographs is the result of the artist’s handling and a signature bearing the imprint of its artist.” – courtesy powerHouse Books.




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