Platinum Palladium and Gum Bichromate

Chrysta Alternative Process & Darkroom, Inactive Workshops, Workshops

July 27 – July 30, 2018

Kerik’s casual and friendly teaching style will have you making excellent prints almost from the start!

with Kerik Kouklis


Platinum/palladium and gum bichromate are two of the most venerable of alternative process photography. Used alone they are each capable of creating beautiful, evocative images–in combination the two processes provide a palette with which truly unique prints can be made. Whether you have experience in either or both of these processes, or if you have never before made a hand-made print, this workshop is for you.

In this four-day hands-on workshop, you will explore platinum/palladium and gum bichromate printing with master printer Kerik Kouklis. You will learn the in-depth techniques and subtleties involved in making digital negatives and exquisite platinum/palladium prints. Kerik will also demonstrate the process of adding layers of gum bichromate to platinum/palladium to enhance and add color and depth to the print.

You’ll start by learning to make high-quality digital negatives using the QuadTone RIP (QTR) program and Epson printers. You will learn how to calibrate and control this powerful tool in a straightforward way using a provided Photoshop script, making correction curves a snap. Using your new digital negatives (or film negatives you bring with you) you will learn the ins and outs of making top-quality platinum/palladium prints, including paper choices, contrast controls, environmental controls, and the best procedures for consistent results. Kerik’s approach to platinum printing is simple and straightforward and does not involve complex sensitometry or math that can make the process appear much more difficult that it is. And—Kerik’s casual and friendly teaching style will have you making excellent prints almost from the start.

Kerik Kouklis Yosemite Platinum/Palladium printing Alternative process photography workshop

Yosemite. Photo © Kerik Kouklis.

In this is a fun and information-packed alternative process workshop you will also learn the fundamentals of the gum bichromate process. Kerik’s very own novel approach to coating provides for very smooth, creamy gum layers that blend seamlessly with the underlying platinum/palladium print. Adding one or more layers of gum bichromate can result in prints that range from subtle to wildly colorful; the final choice is up to you. Whether you shoot 8×10 film or with an iPhone, this workshop will allow you to make beautiful platinum/palladium and gum-over-platinum prints—and have a great time doing it!

Bring your digital camera files or high-quality scans for making digital negatives. You can also bring your own negatives (up to 8×10 in size) to scan during the workshop.

Class Schedule:

Thursday, July 27:  Introductions and learn the platinum/palladium process and start making prints

Friday, July 28Learn to make high-quality digital negatives using QuadTone RIP (QTR) software.

Saturday, July 29: Continued platinum/palladium printing. Learn to apply gelatin sizing. Introduction to gum bichromate process.

Sunday, July 30: Learn to combine the gum and platinum/palladium process. Review and wrap up.