Darkroom Diary # 40 - DIY Analog Handmade Silver Gelatin Emulsions

October 30, 2021  •  1 Comment

Silver Gelatin Emulsion Making by Tim Layton in the Darkroom UndergroundSilver Gelatin Emulsion Making by Tim Layton in the Darkroom Underground In this episode, I take you behind the scenes in my darkroom and walk you through the materials, tools, and supplies you will typically need as a modern day silver gelation emulsion maker.

Starting on November 1st, we are kicking off a brand new series in the Darkroom Underground where we will be walking you through everything you need to know to make a variety of different handmade silver gelatin-based emulsions.

You will learn to make everything from paper negatives, to silver chloride contact printing papers, and enlarging speed printing papers, dry plates, and even film, both roll and large format sheets!

Darkroom Underground - www.timlaytonfineart.com/DUDarkroom Underground - www.timlaytonfineart.com/DU
Making your own emulsions is the ultimate creative freedom in my opinion and you can use it however it makes sense for your creative visions. 

For example, if you like to capture on digital or scan your film and ultimately make digital negatives, but you still want to make true artisan handmade prints, then this new DIY Handmade Analogy Photography Series in the Darkroom Underground will give you everything you need to know.  

If you want to use a total analog workflow like me, then I believe this is the ultimate artisan expression because we can make different emulsions for our negatives and prints and fine tune all the variables to meet our creative intentions.  

Enjoy this video today and I look forward to connect with you inside the Darkroom Underground and teaching you how to make this silver gelatin emulsions.

DIY Analog Photography Handmade Series by Tim LaytonDIY Analog Photography Handmade Series by Tim Layton


Darkroom Underground - www.timlaytonfineart.com/DUDarkroom Underground - www.timlaytonfineart.com/DU

What Are Members Saying About The Darkroom Underground?

Join Tim Layton on YouTubeJoin Tim Layton on YouTube There is no shortage of people providing information on photography on YouTube and the internet.   Some  are even aimed at the analog photographer, but what Tim has done with the Darkroom Underground (DU) is nothing short of pure brilliance.  DU is not only for the analog photographer it is also for the Large Format &  Ultra Large Format Photographer.  I don’t know of anyone else who is covering ULF.

He has simplified learning with wonderful videos that are supplemented with show notes so you have all the information for you to do this on your own. But unlike anything else out there you have Tim as a resource, too. He has always been easily available for questions or clarification and he welcomes suggestions for future shows.

If you are serious about learning all aspects of analog and LF/ULF this is the place to be. -Michael Wellman

"Tim Layton is providing very useful information for all those who are interested in analog photography and large format cameras. He covers in a very detailed and entertaining way the different aspects of this field. He always takes the time to explain the details and share all his know-how. Nothing is hidden or secret. Everything is on the table. 

The videos and blogs are shot and edited in a very professional way. Tim is always ready to receive and share the suggestions and ideas coming from other people. He is a very good community manager. 

I would like also to underline the growing role of his son, Tim Junior who contributes also greatly to the quality of the videos, text and explanation. Last but not least, Tim is always welcoming suggestions and questions and ready to interact. I recommend warmly the work of Tim Layton. -Stéfane France

Join us on Facebook and get the latest updates on the Darkroom Underground Page and connect with analog photographers from around the world in the Darkroom Underground Group.

Free Darkroom Diary by Tim LaytonFree Darkroom Diary by Tim Layton


Tim Layton Fine Art All Access Pass B&W Darkroom Photography Video WorkshopB&W Darkroom Photography Video Workshop Large Format Photography Video Workshop SeriesLarge Format Photography Video Workshop Series B&W Large Format Floral Still Life Video WorkshopB&W Large Format Floral Still Life Video Workshop Large Format B&W Film Testing Video WorkshopLarge Format B&W Film Testing Video Workshop Large Format Paper Negative Video WorkshopLarge Format Paper Negative Video Workshop DIY UV Printer Design & Build Video WorkshopDIY UV Printer Design & Build Video Workshop Platinum & Palladium Printmaking with Vellum Video WorkshopPlatinum & Palladium Printmaking with Vellum Video Workshop

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Note: I participate in affiliate programs where I earn a small commission on some select products that I provide links for on my website at www.timlaytonfineart.com. When you use these links, I earn a small commission and there is no additional charge to you.


This website's a large trove on analog photography information. I found Tim's website 8 years ago when I wanted to learn how to scan negatives so I can make digital prints. I wasn’t quite familiar with negative scanning at the time, so firing off a few emails to Tim were necessary. Surprisingly, his responses were almost immediately. His website piqued my interest and lead to developing my first roll of Kodak Tmax 100. Of course, the next logical step, is to make prints from your negatives, again I found Tim’s site to have the information I needed. And again, more emails were fired off.

Over the years, my desire to improve and understand the black and white process, has kept me coming back. I've been able to progress from medium format film to 4x5 without missing a step. The foundation, Tim’s able to provide with his website and personal coaching, enables me to go into the darkroom with confidence and make my prints. In the darkroom the noise washes away and my focus is on finding the right way to print from the negative. Sometimes it takes hours and from time to time it takes days. It's about practice, practice, practice!

I'm looking forward to learning how to make my own paper emulsion, which again, Tim will walk me step by step. Tim makes it easy; his process works and the best part he's always available.
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