Burnside Darkroom Collective

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PhotoSynthesis is excited to announce that our new community darkroom is now open!

Where: 87 Church Street, #101, East Hartford

Why: Because there aren’t enough darkrooms in the world

What: PhotoSynthesis now operates a 600 SF darkroom for professional and amateur photographers, artists, students, and anyone else with an interest in keeping the “dark arts” alive.

Our initial setup will include:

  • Two Beseler 4×5 condenser enlargers. Available negative carriers include 35mm, 645, 6×6, 6×7, 6×9, mounted slide, and 4×5.
  • One Beseler 23 CIII Variable Contrast. This enlarger has built-in contrast filters and a diffusion head. Available negative carriers include 35mm, 110, 126, 645, 6×6, 6×7, 6×9, 35mm half-frame, and mounted slide.
  • Appropriate lenses are provided for the format in which you’re working – 50mm, 75 or 80mm, 105mm, and 135mm. All lenses are of Nikon quality or better.
  • Each enlarging station also includes a four-bladed easel, 4-in-1 easel, contact proofer, digital timer, focusing sight, and contrast filters.
  • Roll film and 4×5 sheets can be tank processed. Larger films can be tray processed. Stainless tanks and reels for 35mm, 120, 220, 620, 127, 116 and 616 film are available, as well as plastic tanks with adjustable reels and tanks for 4×5 film.
  • One 6′ and one 4′ sink with trays up to 20×24.
  • A vacuum frame and UV light source for cyanotype, salted paper, gum bichromate, platinum, vandyke brown, and numerous other contact printing methods.
  • A mat cutter and 26×34 mounting press will be available during regular PhotoSynthesis business hours.

The facilities will be initially available to members of the new Burnside Darkroom Collective only. A lower tier membership and hourly rentals will be added at a later date. Benefits of Collective membership include:

  • 24/7/365 facilities access by appointment and availability. The darkroom will be for solo use only while the COVID-19 pandemic continues and until we make a few improvements later this summer.
  • 10% discount on PhotoSynthesis workshops
  • 10% discount on PhotoSynthesis fine art printing
  • 10% discount on framing materials
  • Bio and gallery entry on the Burnside Darkroom Collective website (coming soon)
  • An invitation to participate in an annual PhotoSynthesis Members’ Show
  • Possible invitations to exhibit your work as part of the Collective

Members will be responsible for their own chemistry, paper, film, negative sleeves and cleaning materials, and other supplies.

The membership fee for the Burnside Darkroom Collective is $85 per month. There is no security deposit, but we do ask for the first and last months’ payments in advance. Payment is due on the first of each month. We would appreciate a 30-day notice if you decide to leave the Collective. Any fees paid are non-refundable. If you join mid-month, your first month will be prorated accordingly. Collective members must be at least 18 years of age and must have at least a working knowledge of darkroom use and safety. Everyone must attend a brief darkroom tour.

We are now accepting applications for the Burnside Darkroom Collective. Please fill out the following form and we will get back to you shortly.