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Way Beyond Monochrome 2e: Advanced Techniques for Traditional Black & White Photography including digital negatives and hybrid printing Hardcover – September 24, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-0240816258 ISBN-10: 0240816250 Edition: 2nd

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Way Beyond Monochrome 2e: Advanced Techniques for Traditional Black & White Photography including digital negatives and hybrid printing + The Darkroom Cookbook + The Film Developing Cookbook (Darkroom Cookbook, Vol. 2)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Focal Press; 2 edition (September 24, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0240816250
  • ISBN-13: 978-0240816258
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 10.2 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #109,369 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"All our readers need to know about this very useful book." -Photo Techniques Magazine

About the Author

Ralph Lambrecht: From Germany and educated in the US, Ralph is a B&W fine art Photographer. His work has been displayed anywhere from private galleries to the London Salon of Photography. He has written for Camera & Darkroom, Black & White Photography, View Camera Magazine, Way Beyond Monochrome 1e, and he is an active community member of apug.org (Analog Photography Users Group) photo.net and Fotocommunity.
From the UK, Chris has been a member of the Royal Photographic Society for over 25 years and he has invented and patented photographic equipment that sell worldwide. He specializes in landscape, infrared, portraiture, still life, and architecture-mostly in monochrome. Chris has spent a lot of time perfecting the use of digital and traditional technologies harmoniously and he has authored numerous articles on advanced printing techniques for Camera & Darkroom, Ag+ and Photo Techniques.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I'd recommend this book to anyone who spent a year or more in darkroom and want to advance his/her skills.
That being said. . . Way Beyond Monochrome fills an important gap in technical information pertaining to many aspects of Black and White film photography.
Chris Walrath
Also for this reason I do believe this is a great book, also very elegant and extremely well done from the layout point of view.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Keith A. Williams on October 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Disclaimer: I am casually acquainted with one of the authors (R.L.) via a photography forum, and one of my images is included in this book. However, I feel that neither of these issues preclude me from offering an honest critique.

I was at first struck by the size of this book: with 500+ pages, it is an encyclopedia! But the volume of this book is appropriate for its broad, technical scope. The book addresses the physiological aspects of seeing, and the refinement of print tonality... and everything in between. Consistent with the modern context, the reader will also find a thorough treatment of all the digital, hybrid, and traditional tools. With a strong emphasis on clarifying techniques, this book is *very* thoroughly illustrated. Hardly a page is without an example, an illustration or a graph. In addition, numerous tables and templates are found in an appendix. It's literally impossible for me to locate a technical topic that wasn't appropriately described. Yes, MTF, dry down, transmittance etc. are all given full schrift!

The risk that the authors take with this book is to overwhelm the reader with the technical scope, with insufficient treatment of the creative aspects that must always drive the successful craft. Indeed the book contains ~90% technical content. There is a small section on visualization, and a larger "On Assignment" section with narrated examples, but the reader will not find much discussion of fundamental issues such as: what distinguishes black and white photography as an art form; why black and white is effective in some cases for which color photography is not; and the special role of certain abstract graphical elements in the black and white craft.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Caulfield on October 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"Way Beyond Monochrome" second edition could be described as a comprehensive masterwork on traditional photography. Authors Ralph Lambrecht and Chris Woodhouse take the photographer on a journey from the basics of visualisation and print control, through presentation and display of prints, into a thorough treatment of the science of photography. Detailed but clearly-written text is accompanied by a wealth of explanatory figures and photographs. Although the focus of the book is mainly on traditional film photography, digital photography is also covered with an emphasis on digital negative technology. This book is highly recommended to photographers of all levels as it combines in one place all the important elements of the craft of photography.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By S. Wheeler on October 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a review for the 2nd edition of this book.

This book just arrived today, and I have been joyously flipping through its pages all afternoon! I'm an amateur photographer, having been bitten by the bug in college, and have a hobby darkroom set up in my house. I have never taken it too seriously, it's enough for me to simply enjoy the peace and solitude of the darkroom and to geek-out on all of the technical aspects of traditional black and white printing.

Of course I'd like to be more confident in the darkroom, and so much of my good work feels like it came about more by accident than by actually knowing what I was doing. I'd like to think that this book is going to help me in that.

This book is not recommended as a beginner's text. It assumes you know your way around the darkroom and know a bit about shooting and processing film. There are plenty of books to start you on the basics (Ansel Adams' book series, also Henry Horenstein's book "Black & White Photography, A Basic Manual"), but this book really takes it a step further by guiding you through the more advanced, nuanced areas of expert shooting and printing. Some of the topics covered in the book include creating unsharp masks, digital negatives, paper and print contrast, split-grade printing, paper flashing, print bleaching, print retouching, and all kinds of other tips and tricks and projects. I can't believe how well laid out this book is, and many of the techniques I was completely unaware of.

The actual production quality of the nook is amazing, too. There are hundreds of illustrations, examples, diagrams and graphs to help clarify the topics. The photographic examples are extremely well done, and the print quality is very high.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By tk on March 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is clearly not a book written for beginners. There are plenty of books for beginners with how-to and step-by-step instructions. However; once one graduates from such books, one is hard pressed to find anything that takes him/her further. Sporadic information are available in books and internet but nothing concise that presents these information in relevant manner. This book does just that.

Please note, this books is all about film photography. Digital photography is mentioned but only in relation to analog photography. If you are not interested in film, this is not a book for you!

Way beyond monochrome is written in a format of college textbooks for advanced scientific/engineering fields. It starts out slowly but soon, pages are filled with advanced topics and discussions, charts, graphs, and formulas. One can comprehend the topic but good understanding in early college level mathematics help immensely. Some chapters are independent and some flows into more advanced methods/topics in following chapters - very much like college textbooks.

This book is unusual in a way that while it is a book for art, photographic art, but the approach is very scientific. When many photography books might say something is a "bit darker", in this book, it is said 1/3EV darker, for example. Elsewhere, author shows what 1/3 EV difference looks like in prints, explains 1/3EV is understood to be a "significant change" and how much change in contrast and exposure is needed to achieve this change. In fact, there are charts and formulas to explain how this all comes together.
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