In 1955 I made my first colour pictures on Agfacolor Ultra Negative film (40 ASA). Since then I was in for colour photography. About 1960 I made my first colour prints on Gevacolor paper. After this experience I was more and more convinced that the way of getting the best results is printing and enlarging colour pictures myself, like everyone is doing with black and white processing.

There are even today only a small number of photographers who do their colour processing.

Max Kozloff wrote 1975 in the American magazine Colour Photography: "Every practitioner of ambition developed his or her own work: toning, filtering, altering the values, printing, etc.
A goal of optimum personal control was inbred in to their minds, and reached, perhaps, its apogee in the razor-sharp edges and clinically adjusted gradations of Ansel Adams.
A visual artefact entirely supervised by the photographer himself, and wrought to the extremest form of resolution: this was an impossible ideal when your work was in the hands of technicians in the colour lab. Nor did the uncertain permanence of colour prints gladden those who had every right to take permanence for granted."

Industrial processing makes it nearly impossible for the photographer to make personally controlled prints. The fact that this problem was also encountered by others, made me more confident to go on with my processing.

In the same way the colour pigments, the turpentine, the 'skin' of the painting, the canvas are important for the painter: for me are the characteristics of the film and the special character of the colour paper the ruling factor in getting the picture the way I want it to be.

The pictures of this portfolio are printed within 20 years on different materials: Agfacolor paper, Ilfocolor paper and Kodak Ektacolor paper.

Hans-Joachim Schröter.

© 1997 Hans-Joachim Schröter.