Darkroom Dave is my alter-ego. I’m the photographer and Ilford Master Darkroom Printer Dave Butcher.
Here’s the original Ilford poster with all 6 Ilford Master Darkroom Printers listed.
Since 1988 I have lived in the Derbyshire Peak District village of Tunstead Milton, near Whaley Bridge.
I trained and worked as a chemist, with a PhD from the University of Cambridge. I had been selling my hand-printed photographs at a low level since the mid-1980’s but in 2004 I decided to turn my love of black and white photography into a full-time career. Working for Ilford Photo for 21 years, including running the photographic printing department for many years, helped this quite a bit. I still keep close ties with them after they made me one of only six Ilford Master Darkroom Printers in the country. In fact all the materials used in our courses and workshops are from them. A lot of my work has been used on their packaging and marketing material.
I develop and print my own work using Ilford Multigrade fibre based papers and sell unframed prints through my gallery website www.davebutcher.co.uk and through my Etsy Shop. I have also published 6 books.
As of 2023 I no longer run landscape photography courses, darkroom workshops or give lectures.
Walks, treks, skiing and peaks
Lots of my work involves mountain treks and skiing to reach the most dramatic landscapes. I have walked, skied and snowshoed extensively in Britain, including all 284 Munro’s (Scotland’s highest mountains), walked 330 miles over 26 mountains from Glasgow to Cape Wrath using my own unique route, the 300 miles Pennine Way, Wainwright’s Coast to Coast twice, as well as the Tour of Mont Blanc twice, the Alpine Pass Route across Switzerland, the skiers Haute Route from Chamonix to Zermatt, and many more in France, Austria, Italy, Germany and Norway (including 5 Alpine 4000m peaks and dozens of lower peaks), as well as places like California, Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Canadian Rockies and New Zealand.
Most of my work comes from my many trips around the world and throughout the UK. I have also published six books, 5 of landscapes and one of cities.
Out-of-print books are High Light, Peak Light (Peak District) and Lake Light (Lake District).