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If you love analog b&w photography you’ll find a warm welcome here at black & white basement – professional quality, competitive prices and personal service!

Black & White Film Processing

10% off 5 rolls or more

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Black & White Hand Enlarging

20% Introductory offer

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Individual Darkroom Hire

20% off first booking

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One-to-One Tuition

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We are a specialist black & white photolab with 3 self-contained darkrooms available for hire.

We cater for film photographers using 35mm, 120 medium format & 5×4 sheet. Our professional services include b&w film processing – silver gelatine hand enlargements & one-to-one darkroom tuition.

We are open weekdays 9 am – 5.30 for personal callers or mail order enquiries.

Why Film?

In a digital age, why do so many photographers still prefer to use film to capture their images? The answers are many and various but most frequently we hear that the process is more intuitive, enjoyable and the end result more satisfying. We’d be interested to know your reasons for using film.

What makes Black & White Basement so special?

Black & White Basement is the brainchild of Keith Lyons, founder of Lab35 & Lab120 – UK’s leading professional photolabs for over three decades. Our bespoke B&W darkroom now specialises in analogue film processing and printing using traditional hand enlarging equipment to produce work of the highest quality. The service is aimed at both the enthusiast and professional photographer who still chooses to use film as part of their photographic repertoire. All printing is supervised by Dave Champion, who has over 30 years experience as a commercial photographer and exhibition quality printer.  Dave is also our senior tutor providing friendly and expert tuition on a one-to-one basis.

How do you develop my precious negatives?

With care and by hand. We develop 35mm, 120 medium format rolls and even ‘super-pro’ 5×4 sheet film – all to professional standards. Your negatives are pre-loaded into spirals and hand processed using the traditional ‘deep tank’ system with developer, stop-bath, fixer and wash. We use a filtered wash & even mix the final ‘photo-flow’ rinse with de-ionised water to prevent drying marks and give a perfect finish. During the critical development stage, particular care is taken with time, temperature and agitation to allow for different film brands and types. Push/Pull options are also available for speed adjustment if required. Once the ‘wet’ stages are complete, films are gently air dried, hand cut and clear sleeved in 6’s for filing and storage.

Will my negatives be printed using traditional methods?

Yes – our hand printing darkroom is specially equipped for black and white film processing and printing using Ilford and Kodak print materials and chemistry. Our expertly crafted prints are made by hand and produced on DeVere or Leitz optical enlargers with Nikon and Rodenstock lenses to deliver that indefinable quality only achievable with real silver prints. Each print is accurately graded for density and contrast with ‘burning and shading’ techniques applied where necessary. Finishing includes hand trimming and retouching using specialist photo-dyes applied with sable brush to remove dust spots.

Can I hire your darkroom?

Certainly – you can hire one of our 4 fully equipped darkrooms to make your own analogue black and white prints on a full or half-day basis at very reasonable rates. You can choose either dishes for processing your prints or use our super-efficient Ilfolab 2150 automatic table-top processor which delivers ‘dry-to-dry’ prints upto 20×16 inches in just 80 seconds! There is also a special 2-hour session available for film processing using our dark loading area, Patterson tank system and including Rodinal developer.

Do you offer tuition?

Expert one-to-one tuition is also available with our senior tutor Dave Champion. You can choose full or half-day sessions or arrange a planned course of lessons if required. Option for 2 person tuition session by special arrangement.

Are your processing and printing charges reasonable?

We think so and we certainly aim to be competitive on all our black and white services. What’s more, new customers will receive an introductory discount and regular clients will benefit from special offers throughout the year via our newsletter.

Can I call you for advice?

With pleasure – we are always happy to offer advice or guidance to help with your analogue photography and processing needs. Just phone 020 7624 2244 or email – we’re sure you’ll find the answers right here at Black & White Basement.

Where can I find you – can I send work by mail order?

We’re conveniently located in leafy St. John’s Wood, North West London – close to the famous Abbey Road Studios and Lord’s Cricket Ground. We’re just a few minutes from St. Johns Wood underground station on the Jubilee line and the 139 bus stops on the corner of Abbey Road and Blenheim Terrace. There is a small forecourt for customers to park during their visit. We welcome both personal callers and mail order customers. Click here for map and full address.

How do I pay for your services?

We’re happy to take payment by Cheque, BACS or PayPal – cash is also accepted.

Neda M    27th April 2018  

Just emailing to say thank you so much for yesterday! I am definitely pleased with the negatives, contact sheets and hand prints I produced and will certainly be booking another session – this time with a friend.

Steven Jeffels    27th August 2017  

Quality service and amazing knowledge of photography.

Luly    21st October 2017  

Thank you very much for all the tuition – Please forward my thanks to David the last session was really helpful. I had a really happy and unforgettable time at Black & White Basement. Thank you for the space and hospitality – looking forward to seeing more of your darkroom when I see you next time.

Simon B    26th March 2018  

Thanks again for the excellent session and Keith’s invaluable help to really get to grips with development of negatives, it was excellent.

Barry C    11th April 2018  

Thank you so much for all your help over the many pleasurable sessions I’ve had at BWB.

It’s been a delight watching the darkroom expand and more people come in over the years, the facilities and equipment remain second-to-none in my experiences, and I’ve used many darkrooms in the past!

If you’re new to this, or a seasoned veteran, Keith couldn’t make you feel any more welcome, and you will quickly be producing excellent work in his well setup darkroom.

Samantha S    25th April 2018  

Just wanted to say a massive thank you for Sunday! Realised how much I’ve missed being creative and using my hands to work, so I’m very grateful. It was such a great day, and I’m really excited to spend more time developing and practising the process further.

Shashank    4th August 2014  

Thanks, I had a great time in the darkroom today!

Sara R    30th July 2014  

What a surprising delight this afternoon ended up being. Thank you so much for all your time. Thank you for all your generosity and kindness and mentorship. I would love to come in another session sometime soon. I am afraid that I have caught the ‘darkroom bug’.

James P    31st July 2016  

I had such a terrific time on Monday with you guys – brilliant! Got some lovely prints last time and I’d like very much to do a second day of tuition. Very glad to have found you and thanks again for your excellent welcome and tuition.

Mattia C    23rd April 2018  

I have really enjoyed my printing session with David in February – it has been a wonderful day that I won’t forget.

Christopoher Ridley    10th May 2018  

Excellent facilities and work at great prices.. a valuable resource for us who use film and like prints.

Nihal Chadha    7th July 2017  

Hired the area for some film processing, it was very cheap. B&W were very helpful and quite a nice dude.

Sebastian Rooks    13th May 2016  

I just booked me second tuition session in Black & White Basement. The owner is really friendly, their equipment is professional and they provide a one on one tuition to learn.
I will advertise them to all my photographer friends who need a quiet and peaceful environment for developing their negs. and do enlargements.

Louise Pearson    10th July 2014  

I work in an historic photograph archive and felt that I would really benefit from understanding more about the science and techniques behind the prints I work with. I enjoyed the experience very much and I definitely think the process of making a photograph is clearer in my head now! My colleagues were interested in what I had learnt and enjoyed seeing my prints.

Best wishes and thanks to Dave as well,

Louise

Neda M    27th April 2018  

Just emailing to say thank you so much for yesterday! I am definitely pleased with the negatives, contact sheets and hand prints I produced and will certainly be booking another session – this time with a friend.

Steven Jeffels    27th August 2017  

Quality service and amazing knowledge of photography.

Ron Humphreys    14th August 2014  

It was so good to hear that craft skills are on the way back! Many thanks indeed for turning round the prints so quickly. You’ve done wonders with the two ice cream eaters – just the ticket! I only wish I’d ordered some larger prints too! Anyway, thanks for all your efforts – rest assured I’ll be recommending BWBasement to all my friends. Really pleased!

Luca Rocchini    10th February 2016  

Five star review – Facebook

Dori    19th August 2014  

Thank you, I’ve received the scans, they are perfect!

D Cottle    21st August 2014  

I just wanted to say thanks very much again for all your help yesterday. It was so kind of you to help me set up the enlarger/easel and take time out of your busy day to explain how to make my prints better. It was absolutely invaluable for me. I’m really very grateful and learned such a lot! I will send you some possible dates to book a half day in the darkroom soon.

I just wanted to say thank you again for so kindly giving up your time to teach me today. It is always a privilege for me to have the opportunity to learn from you, and to print in the darkroom, and today was no exception.

Thank you for all your kindness and I very much look forward to getting back into the darkroom next week for more printing.

Andrew Tadrou    10th August 2014  

Thank you Keith for your efficient service, the film arrived and I am very pleased with your service and the results.

Thank you until next time,

Andrew

Black & White Basement is here to help – you shoot the film and we do the rest!