Brooks Institute

I left photography for 40 years. Now totally addicted again trying to find my roots. I graduated from Brooks Institute in the early 70s. Just wondered if there were any other Brooks folks still around maybe on this site.

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Welcome back to photography! I can’t help you with the other question! =)

Thanks, @Matt_Payne
I do not know if younger generations even know about Brooks. It was a wonderful art school a lot of now very famous photographers taught there the gang from Carmel stopped by on occasion and taught master classes. I did not appreciate it as much as I should have at the time. In high school, I became a founding member of Freinds of Photography and recently found several of their publications, stored away in boxes. Friends of Photography was the reason I went to Santa Barbara where Brooks was located. As an example of the Brooks teaching method, you were only allowed to use a 4x5 view camera for the first year. Color theory was taught by making Dye Transfer prints. Sandbag a tripod and take 4 B&W negatives thru process filters. Lay down one dye matrix at a time to create a color print. The process took weeks and if you screwed up you did not know till the end. If done well the prints were killers.
I am sounding like an old fart which I am. I just found out Brooks is no longer.
If anyone stumbles on this and is interested - let me know and I can ramble on more.
Thanks for the reply.


Definitely the old school way of learning photography, and there were probably huge benefits to those more methodical steps! Brooks Institute was familiar in my brain so I did a search of all of the transcripts of my podcast and one of my older podcast episodes has a guest that went there. He’s a younger dude, and arguably one of the best landscape photographers today.

Thanks for taking the time to search the transcripts. Listened to the podcast and a few more. Enjoyed them very much. I just did your Patreon thing.

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Thanks Steve! Hopefully you find some gems in there to listen to. It’s quite a backlog!

Brooks was great. I was saddened to hear of its closing.

Morning @russ2
When were you there?

Just ran across this


Hey Steve,

It’s great that you’re returning to photography. That classical training will definitely serve you well as you relearn the craft in the digital age. You’re probably discovering that a lot of those old skills translate better than most realize.

Our good friend, @Brent_Doerzman, went to Brooks ('89). Maybe tagging him will encourage him to jump in and connect with you. @Matt_Payne actually knows him too. :wink:

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Thanks for the tag @Scott_Bacon! @ Steve Rosendahl, I was at Brooks 88-91, and been in Colorado ever since. Still have my most of my 4x5 gear (sold studio camera, still have wooden field 4x5) but hasn’t seen much use in the last few years… :slight_smile: And yes, still have the very 1st 4x5 transparency we shot at the Mission!

Thanks, @Scott_Bacon @Brent_Doerzman
I am a bit older and graduated in the early 70s. Have not thought about the Mission Shot, in a long time. That was the first larger format exposure I made. The kit we dragged around the first year was like 60 lbs. Still have all my vintage gear including my Nikons underwater 35 mm. Went out with Ernie II to document his channel island explorations.
Have not remembered the details you just triggered in a long time.
Thanks for touching base.
I am headed down to the Okefenokee swamp, Miakai River, Big Cypress Preserve, and Everglades National Park. Leaving in about an hour.
I have not been back to South Florida since Covid.
Thanks again
My son just moved to Longmont so I will be visiting CO in the spring,

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Great to see you here again Brent!