Clip of John at work; thanks to actor/singer Lucy Park for permission to film her session.

I am John Hoare, a photographer and cinematographer shooting brand films for 20 years. In 2017 I stumbled across some mysterious photos of surfers by Joni Sternbach.  They were clearly in modern dress… but they appeared to have be taken by a victorian photographer.

Leonardo - Wetplate Collodion TintypeThey led me to a small but active community of photographers reviving the collodion tintype process, producing beautiful, striking, black and white images.

So I built a shed, bought an 8×10 bellows camera and an antique lens, and started taking portraits. Come and sit for one! My studio shed is in Crouch End, north London.

Wetplate collodion is a chemical photographic process from the 1850s, which replaced the daguerreotype.  A plate of tin or glass is sensitised with silver nitrate and placed in a large format camera. Collodion plates have a sensitivity of under one ISO (digital cameras have an ISO of 800) so exposures are 5+ seconds. The final product is silver metal imprinted on a black sheet, a unique artefact that makes a great gift… and an arresting image on social media!

The best way to see my work is to follow me on Instagram.

Drop me a line to come and have your portrait taken.