I love to coach, mentor, and teach photographers of all skill levels the art and craft of traditional darkroom photography. I am always rewarded with new friendships and experiences I would not have otherwise had.
I mentor, coach, and help people grow both technically and creatively. We start by understanding your goals, and then I listen and get an idea of where you are in your technical skills that will allow you to fully realize your creative vision.
With modern technology, location is no longer a barrier to learning. I especially enjoy the mentoring process because I get to know a person and I can watch them grow over time. My hourly rate for mentoring and coaching is $100 USD. Discounted rates are available for blocks of time.
In addition to coaching and mentoring, I hold workshops from time to time. I schedule the workshops around my creative projects and announce them via my Newsletter. Subject matter, pricing, and all other related information vary by the workshop, and I cover all of this in the newsletter.
If you want to discuss an area that you want help in, then send me an email and introduce yourself.
I just built a new darkroom and cabin off the grid in the Ozark Mountain area. I plan to host more workshops now that I have space to comfortably bring people into my darkroom and home. I am surrounded by over a million acres of the Mark Twain National forest and an endless supply of natural subjects that would take anyone multiple lifetimes to fully explore. The area is rich with natural resources and historical subjects that make learning and applying new skills and knowledge a pleasure and joy.
What Are People Saying?
"I’ve had the good fortune of learning large format (LF) photography and darkroom techniques from Tim over the last two years. Tim has a wealth of knowledge on these topics and has saved me countless hours by sharing his experiences with me. Tim has the ability to take very complex topics and break them down into simple processes. He is a clear, concise communicator and is patient and always willing to help.
With Tim’s guidance and mentoring a beginning large format photographer like myself can get up to speed quickly. As I advanced, Tim offered new materials, techniques and considerations that were instrumental in my artistic developed. Tim is humble and genuinely loves to see other photographic artists develop and grow. I could not be happier with the support, training and mentoring Tim has provided me over the years. Choosing to study with Tim was the best decision I made in my development as a large format black and white fine art photographer." -Frank, Seattle, WA
"Tim's leadership, ingenuity and bag of tricks make for an awesome learning experience!" -Al, St. Louis
"For anyone considering taking a workshop with Tim, hang on to your hat and be prepared to go to brave new worlds. Taking a class with Tim is like taking a bath in pure inspiration. Tim shares valuable technical and equipment tips from his considerable years of experience creating solutions to photography situations. He also shares insights on how you might consider approaching creative photography. It is equally important that Tim is friendly and willing to respect each photographer where they are in their own technical and creative journey. There is never a sense that he is talking down to anyone. Thank you, Tim for being so willing to open your heart and your thoughts to us. I feel invigorated and can't wait to try out and adapt the information shared." -Valerie, St. Louis
"Wow! I learned so much in a short period of time. Tim is passionate and enthusiastic and readily shares his knowledge. I not only learned from Tim, I learned from everyone in the class. The Macro Workshop was fantastic!" -Karen, VA
"Have you ever had the experience of thinking you knew a subject well and then finding someone that opens up entirely new dimensions on the subject for you? Tim's photography workshops are like that for me. Tim shares decades of experiences and lessons including the mindset of photography, preparation, inspiration, creativity, learning the subject, techniques, and gear. Tim is humble and willing to share all he knows. He goes out of his way to ensure that every person receives exceptional value from your time together. His many inexpensive alternatives for gear produce better results while saving time and money. Though I've completed a three-year professional photography course, read many dozens of books and have shot seriously for five years, I leave each of Tim's workshops overflowing with new information and inspired to take my photography to the next level. I couldn't be happier with Tim's workshops nor recommend them more highly to anyone desiring to improve their photography." - Allen, Ballwin
"Simply terrific. It is hard to explain how much stuff you learn in a workshop with Tim. He covers everything from equipment, technique, processing all the way to the "zen" of taking the photograph. Excellent stuff. It will take me months to work through all this material and give it a try in the field. It was that comprehensive." -Janis, St. Louis
“It was a great experience. I learned some history about the park area and some valuable photographic tips and a mini lessons on wild plants. Thank you Tim. I also quickly learned that Tim is a perfectionist based on past few events. Thank you for taking the time to drive us around some nice photographic sites which I wouldn't have known without your help.” -Karu, Creve Coeur
"Tim shared his decades of experience hiking and photographing hidden gems in the off-trail backwoods of Missouri. Tim knows what makes a great landscape photo and will share his secrets and tricks. Highly recommended." -Chis, University City
"I was able to join the Waterfalls-Glassberg Conservation Area workshop in June. Tim was a great leader. He made recommendations for what to wear, what lenses to bring, and he made recommendations for anything else I might need. He not only lead the group off-trail to some magnificent sights, he also made sure we knew the landmarks so we could get back to them again. I highly recommend Tim's workshops and I can't wait to sign up for another. Definitely 5*****!" -Kay, St. Louis
"Tim's macro photography class has exceeded my expectation. Tim has a wealth of knowledge in photography and thank you so much for sharing the tips and inner secrets with us…..not many professionals do in this competitive world. The macro photography class had the right balance of classroom presentation, field demonstration and hands-on experiences. The class size was perfect and the nice bunch of students. I wish the weather was better but you or I don’t have control over. You have a ton of cool gadgets and I really liked the inexpensive ideas that you shared with the students on making reflectors, diffusers, light box and etc. Collectively, I should say it was lot of fun and lot of learning….thank you Tim. Greatly appreciated! -Kevin, St. Louis
"I remember being in an art gallery opening in 2011 and coming across a photo, clearly it was printed in the darkroom, and thinking to myself, my prints should look like that. Up until this point I, was using a Nikon D700 and becoming unhappy with my prints. Coincidence would have it, along side the analog print was a digital print, which made it easy to compare. That's what I did! Everything that bothered me about my digital prints, were clearly visible and the analog print was flawless.
The next day I started my search for an analog camera and purchased a Mamiya RZ 67 Pro II and a few rolls of Ilford and Kodak film. Each manufacture's online information pointed me to the chemicals I needed and how I should develop the appropriate film. The negatives seemed ok, but deep down I was not content. Knowing what to search for, I found Tim Layton's blog. I saw immediate improvements in my negatives by using his process. If you have time, go back to his blog and read all his posts, do it! It might take you the weekend, like it did me, but it's worth it. His blog posts are written in a deliberate manor. He holds your hand as you read through the post. You get a sense of ease and comfort as you read his posts. He makes it easy to learn the material and retain the information. You walk away with confidence to do it on your own. You never walk away from his posts with doubts, only the need to learn more.
The last five years I have done nothing but learn from Tim. Along the way, I rented a small warehouse and turn a section into a darkroom. Again, I turned to Tim for help. I only turn to him when I'm stumped and can't figure out how to solve the issue at hand. I emailed him my situation and within the same day he provided a lengthy response. His response was through and he even anticipated some road blocks I may encounter along the way. What surprised me was, first he responded, second he responded so quickly and third he was extremely detailed. I maybe some what of a cynic, I never thought he would respond with such vigor and enthusiasm. With that being said, I felt confident and comfortable that he was steering me in the right direction and had my best interest at hand.
There are times when frustration doesn't allow you to move forward and it becomes such a road block, you can't even express yourself in an email. I emailed Tim if I could call him. Again, his response surprised me, he provided an phone number and a time to call. Wow, he gave his phone number to a complete stranger. In our first conversation, he listen then provided a lengthy response. This blew my mind. He has the time and patience to help out little old me, someone just starting out in analog photography. Like his blog posts, he holds your hand and guides you. You can hear his calm demeanor. You can hear his passion and vast knowledge for analog photography. You have no choice but to listen. This year I reached out to him, yet again, to see if he would mentor me. He was enthusiastic about it. He's laid out a mentoring program for the remaining year and I have no doubt he will catapult me to the next level." -Favian, Florida