[Alt-photo] the alt family tree

Jacques Kevers jacqueskv at gmail.com
Mon Jul 24 15:08:50 UTC 2017

About my involvement with alt. processes:

>From 1985 till 1988, I followed photography courses at the  "Ecole de
photographie de la Ville de Bruxelles" which became in the meantime the
"Ecole de photo Agnès Varda". It was not until 1988 that I heard about alt.
processes in this school, when a guest photographer named Angelo Camilli,
born in Frosinone (Italy) around 1937 and established in Belgium, did a
presentation about bromoil, explaining how he succeeded in replacing the
long gone non-supercoated papers by Agfa's Brovira. Camilli also founded
the "Associazione Pittorialisti Europei", an international non-profit
organisation promoting pictorialism and its processes. I attended that same
year a bromoil workshop he organized, and still have his 7-pages bromoil

After graduation, developments in my professional career didn't allow me to
spend much time in lengthy photo processes, and I forgot about bromoil for
about 10 years.
In the late nineties, work becoming less hectic, I got more time for
photography. While looking for a printing frame, I met René Smets who was
(and still is) making some beautiful ones. René is a self-taught expert in
bromoil, and practicing nearly every early photographic process existing.
He got me hooked again, and told me about the Yahoo group "The
InterNETional Society of Bromoilists" founded by the late Gene Laughter (he
passed away last February). I also met around that time Roger Kockaerts,
who was organizing alt-proc exhibitions in his Brussels-based "atelier pH7"

In addition to online discussions, Gene organised physical meetings  called
"Hopperfests". I attended one in 2002  in New Orleans, where I met Maija Mc
Dougall,  chair of the UK Bromoil Circle. We deplored the low overseas
attendance and decided - with Gene's blessing - to organize a similar event
in Europe. I assisted Dennis Atherton from the UK Bromoil Circle in the
organization of a first meeting in Amsterdam (The Netherlands) in 2004, and
organized on my own the following ones in Leverkusen (Germany - 2006),
Brussels (Belgium - 2008) and Paris (France -2010). In conjunction with the
Brussels event, I organized an alt-proc. exhibition, with about 30
participants from a dozen countries.

René Smets was one of the regular participants in these meetings. We ended
up creating a national group meeting several times per year instead of
having international events every two years. Picto Benelux started its
activities in August 2010. We have now about 50 members, meeting 5-6 times
per year, and dealing with all historical processes. Picto Benelux is
present on the web (http://www.picto.info) and on Facebook (

As for the books/publications that have been inspiring me (lengthy list -
just cut off if not interested..):

Principles of photographic pictorialism - F.C. Tilney - 1930
The technique of pictorial photography - Paul L. Anderson - 1939
Print Finishing - William Mortensen - 1938
Picture making with paper negatives - Nowell Ward - 1938
La Technique Photographique     L.P. Clerc    1947
Chimie et Physique Photographiques    Pierre Glafkidès     1976

Technical - Alt.

Les procédés d'Art en Photographie ( gomme -huile-bromoil-report)
Constant Puyo    1931
L'Interprétation Artistique par la Photographie    Émile Rombaut     1924

 World Journal of Postfactory Photography (Judy Seigel) - 9 issues
The Keepers of Light - William Crawford -1979
The Albumen & Salted Paper Book -     James Reilly    1980
Handbook of Alternative Photographic Processes - Jan Arnow - 1982
Spirits of Salts     - Randall Webb & Martin Reed, 1999
Cyanotype    Mike Ware    1999
Coming into Focus - John Barnier - 2000
Alternative Photographic Processes 2nd Ed. 2007 - Christopher James
The Salt Print Manual    Ellie Young    2011
Gum Printing & other amazing contact printing processes - Christina Z
Anderson 2013
Guide to Photographic Alternative Processes - Jill Enfield - 2014

- English
Bromoil printing & bromoil transfer - Dr. Emil Mayer -  1923
Bromoil and transfer - Leonard G Gabriel - 1930
Pigment Printing - The bromoil process from the negative to the transfer -
G.L. Hawkins - 1933
Bromoil and transfer      Whalley, Geoffrey E.  1961
History and Practice of oil and bromoil printing - Luis Nadeau 1985
- German
Der Bromöldruck - Dr. A. Mebes - 1914
Technik des Bromöl-Umdruckes - Willy Zielke - 1931 (reprint 1988)
- French
Les procédés aux encres grasses. Huile & Report    Constant Puyo     1926
Le procédé à l'huile en photographie    Charles Duvivier     1931



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