Photo School
door, loches



The Photo School is something between a book, a magazine, an encyclopaedia and a self-instruction course. Above all, it is supposed to be easy to read, useful and enjoyable; and, we hope, in most cases accurate and even authoritative.

It consists of numerous modules, which are sometimes like chapters of a book; sometimes like magazine articles; and sometimes, well, just unclassifiable.



Door, Loches





Roger shot this on Ilford XP2 Super, trade processed, printed (by Frances) on Ilford Multigrade Warmtone.The lens was a Voigtländer 90/3.5 Apo Lanthar on either a Leica M4-P or a Voigtländer Bessa-R2.

Action Level (from Reviews)

Agoraphilia (love of marketplaces)

Appropriate quality (from 'Quality in Photography')

Arles 2008 (from 'Events')

Arles 2009 (from 'Events')

Art and photography

Artisan and Artist camera straps


Backgrounds and foregrounds


Basics (a multi-part set of modules on, yes, basics)

Black and white photography


Box Brownie Leicas see Leica


Bulk loading 35mm film (from 'How do I...?')


Camera, The (from basics)

Camera movements

Change and decay


Choosing a lab

Choosing developing tanks, see Developing tanks

Choosing films

Choosing lenses

Choosing negative developers

Colour for colour's sake

Composition I (from Quality in Photography)

Creating a photo-school course


Cut film holders, loading (from 'How do I..?')


Darkroom (converting toilet to) see Smallest Room

Darkrooms, see Our Darkrooms

Decisive moments

Density (technical)

Details (composition)

Developers, choosing, see Choosing developers

Developing tanks for 35mm (from 'How do I...?')

Developing tanks, choosing (from 'How do I...?')

Dodging and burning


Ektar 100 film see Kodak

Exakta Varex VX IIa (Yes, the 1950s original) (from Reviews)

Events (photo festivals, etc.)

Exposing negative films

Exposing slides and digital

Exposure guide (when you haven't a meter, from Basics)


Farewell to the King (Leica 50/1 Noctilux review)

Film, introduction to, see Welcome to Film

Films, choosing, see Choosing films

Filter adapters, skeletonizing see Skeletonizing

Fixer testing (from 'How do I...?')

The focal point (composition)


Focus and depth of field (from Basics)

Fotosniper see Photosniper

Four views of a statue



Gray cards

Gurus and why to avoid them


Handling 120 film (from 'How Do I...?')

Hard edge (composition)

Hints and tips

How do I...? (a series of modules, a bit like Basics)

How many cameras do you need?

Hybrid darkrooms



Introduction to film, see Film

Introduction to photo school

Irreproducible results

ISO film speeds


Kodak Ektar 100 film (from Reviews)


Labs, choosing, see Choosing a lab

Large format lenses, re-shuttering (from 'How do I...?')

Large formats

Large format see also Upside down

Leica as a Box Brownie (from Basics)

Leica f/2.5 Summarits (from Reviews)

Leica M8 (from Reviews)

Leica M8.2 (from Reviews)

Leica M9 (from Reviews)

Leica Noctilux 50/1 see Farewell to the King

Leica Summilux 24/1.4 (from Reviews)

Leica Tri-Elmar 4/16-18-22 (from Reviews)

Leitz 90/2.2 Thambar (from Reviews) TO FOLLOW

Lens hood fittings (from 'How do I...?) TO FOLLOW

Lenses (from basics)

Lenses, choosing, see Choosing lenses

Loading cut film holders see Cut film holders

Loading 35mm into developing tanks (from 'How do I...?)

Low-light photography


Magic windows

Markets, see agoraphilia

Medium formats

Meters and metering

Microtests and other reviews

Movement in a Still Life (Model Aircraft)

Movements, see Camera Movements


Narrative, record and graphic pictures

Negative development technique

Negative exposure see Exposing negative films



Old lenses

Our darkroom(s)

Our materials


Part and the Whole, the

Paterson water filter (from 'Microtests')

Perspective and the illusion of depth

Photography and motorcycles

Photosniper (from Reviews)

Portrait and landscape

Portrait lenses and lighting


Print File sleeves (from 'Microtests')

Processing 35mm and 120 film (from 'How do I...?')

Processing sheet film in a Paterson Orbital tank (from 'How do I...?')


Quality in photography (a series of modules)


Rangefinder photography

Re-shuttering large format lenses



Saving money

S.E.I Photometer (from Reviews)


Sharpness I (from 'Quality in Photography')

Sheet film processing in Paterson Orbital tank see Paterson Orbital

Shirley Wellard cassettes, manufacturers' instructions (from 'How do I...?')

Shooting the past

Shutters and shutter speeds (from Basics)

Slide exposure see Exposing slides

Still lifes

Smallest room (toilet) as darkroom (from 'How do I...?')

Sonnar, see Zeiss

Street photography

Subject brightness range

Summarits, see Leica

Summilux 24/1.4 see Leica


Testing fixer see Fixer testing


Thambar 90/2.2 (from Reviews)


Tri-Elmar 4/16/18/21 see Leica Tri-Elmar

Trouble shooting TO FOLLOW


Turret finder, Soviet, see Soviet Turret Finder


Upside-down cameras, why and how (from 'How do I...?')

Using 35mm cameras (from 'How do I...')


Varex, see Exakta

Visoflex III on M9

Voluntary limits

WATE see Leica Tri-Elmar


Welcome to film

Werra (from Reviews)

White on white

Wide-angle Tri-Elmar see Leica Tri-Elmar

The Worst DSLR in the World (Visoflex III on M9)

Zeiss 50/1.5 Sonnar (from Reviews)

Zeiss 4/18 Distagon (from Reviews)

Zeiss Ikon (camera and lenses, from Reviews)

Zone focusing (from 'How do I...?')

Zone System: why we avoid it

18% gray cards, see Gray cards

16-18-21 Tri-Elmar see Leica Tri-Elmar

18 mm Zeiss Distagon see Zeiss

35mm bulk loading, see Bulk loading

35mm cameras, see Using 35mm cameras

35mm cassettes see Cassettes

35mm and developing tanks, see Developing tanks

35mm film processing see Processing 35mm and 120

120 film see Handling 120 film

120 film processing see Processing 35mm and 120


Girl reading map

There are so many exhibitions at the Rencontres at Arles (this is 2008) that it can be hard to choose which ones to visit, in what order, and for how long. This site is much the same, we hope.



A Bright Future Awaits You On the Colony Planets

We like to travel as much as we can. This Beijing street scene reminded Frances so much of the movie Blade Runner that the title suggested itself.



Mearle's Drive-In, Visalia, California

The classic Corvette was pure luck, and even though Roger had slow film (Fuji 50) and a slow lens (Zeiss Biogon 50/4.5) he decided to try his luck anyway, at about 1/15 hand held. If you don't play, you can't win.



Long Range Desert Group

Re-enactors are often wonderful subjects, and as they are (pretty much by definition) putting themselves on display, there is rarely much embarrassment about photographing them.



Girl on water-slide, Igal, Hungary

The great thing about most of continental Europe is that people still regard it as a bit of a lark to be photographed, rather than getting upset about it. We have a great weakness for spas, and Igal is probably our favourite.



Reculver Towers

Frances hand-coated heavy water-colour paper with liquid emulsion to make this picture. The trouble is, of course, that there is a certain amount of luck involved in how the image and the coating interact.



Danseuse, Spectacle de Danse, Moncontour 2007

Every year, the local Jazz Dance Association puts on a Spectacle de Danse with dancers of all ages: this is one of the youngest. Frankly, the picture isn't very sharp: it is a close-up, taken with a Noctilux 50/1 at full aperture and ISO 2500. Is the lack of sharpness the first thing you notice?



Voigtländer Bessa-1

There is inevitably a fair amount about equipment on the site: we just don't agree with the people who say. "Equipment doesn't matter." What we're concerned with is on the one hand, the right equipment for the job, and on the other, having fun with that you've got.



Barred window, Arles

Arles again, because it illustrates one of the things we shoot a lot of: old buildings, ruins, ancient towns and cities. We go there every year for the Rencontres.



Sunshade, South of France

Although Roger shoots the majority of our colour, for which he uses mostly digital cameras (almost exclusively Leicas) we both prefer film for black and white. Frances used 6x9cm Ilford HP5 Plus in her Alpa for this picture.



Lido, Margate

Frances does quite a lot of hand colouring, sometimes of her own pictures (as here) and sometimes of Roger's. There is a whole gallery of hand colouring.


Shooting platform

The roof rack on our old Land Rover makes a wonderful shooting platform and greatly reduces the need for rising fronts or shift lenses.

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© 2010 Roger W. Hicks