Alex Bond works with film-based, large format, landscape photography in Perth Western Australia. His photographs are created while hiking with his large-format 4×5 field camera.

He continues to use sheet film for its slower pace, because it’s tactile, and for its inherent aesthetics. Although now considered an alternative photographic process, Alex continues his practice of traditional darkroom printmaking, using established archival techniques and procedures. He shares his knowledge and skills through workshops and tuition.

Alex Bond offers a unique collection of traditional hand printed, silver gelatin photographs, exploring the Western Australian landscape. Photographs are available as dry-mounted prints on museum board or as a print only.

“Alex Bond knows when not to take a photograph. His approach to capturing the WA landscape on film is based on patience and attunement. The results have found a worldwide audience.”

Stephen Scourfield, The West Magazine, The West Australian Newspaper

black and white large format film image of West Australian swamp sheoaks and white flowers
Perth Canning River Wetlands

While everyone else had a real job I spent more than 25 years hiking and camping in southwest Western Australia. With my trusty wooden field camera and a few sheets of film, you can find me out on the coast, in the bush or exploring some peak.

I go for long walks. It gives me time to become immersed in my surroundings. In my backpack, I carry my field camera, film, tripod and sometimes a tent and food.

The West has a unique and ancient landscape. Our quality of light is both as hard as it is voluminous. It provides me with a continual challenge to reproduce that quality within the limitations of a photograph.

Film cameras and light sensitive photographic paper

large format landscape photography camera used by author
Location photography using a large format sheet film field camera

My introduction to large format film landscape photography was in the era of film cameras and light-sensitive photographic paper. Film cameras such as my field camera are very simple and robust. I am frequently working outdoors in rain, dusty or salty conditions.  My wooden 4×5 film camera does not require any batteries and is lighter than a digital SLR.

Hand Crafted Silver Gelatin Photographic Prints

tradition darkroom dodging and burning techniques
Hand printing silver gelatin prints using an enlarger and traditional darkroom

I develop my film in a tank and print my photographs in a traditional wet darkroom. By today’s standards, it is neither fast nor easy. But it is a process I maintain to this day. It remains alongside my digital workflow.

large format landscape photography prints in archival clamshell storage
Perth Canning River Collection – 16×20 inch fibre based prints dry mounted onto 100% cotton museum board

Printmaking by hand is the final and possibly most important act in this creative cycle. This level of involvement gives an unquestioning intention and authenticity to a photographer’s works.

I explore my subject over a period of years. I do not plan images, I work to discover. Many of my images fail, but those I’m happy with, form the body of my print collections.


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