Robert Laycock – Capers Restaurant
Like most people, I've had a camera of some kind in my hand all my life but it wasn't until I started to make black and white prints in my own darkroom that photography really came to life for me. Other than being dependent on Kodak and Ilford to supply the raw materials, I was in control of the entire process and valued the quality of my printmaking.
In the 80s and 90s I made black and white prints using larger negatives. I took extension courses at Ryerson (Advanced printing -- Michael Torosian, Large-format – Peter Lindsay) and attended several workshops with Howard Bond in Ann Arbor. I abandoned my darkroom when I moved to Trent Hills around 2004. Although I miss the magic of working in the darkroom, I've made an enthusiastic conversion to working digitally.
I photograph a wide range of subjects and in the past I've taken an interest in the intersection of modern suburbia with the remnants of rural Ontario: pioneer graveyards, leftover barns. I've worked on a series of portraits of couples in care-giving relationships (One path, many journeys), something I'd like to start on again. I enjoy working with colour, but more recently I find myself going back to monochrome prints and I'm working on scanning and printing many of the negatives that were never printed in the darkroom. I also find that I frequently want to convert my digital colour images to black and white. I've done that with some of the prints in this show.