Interview with Joy Goldkind

Joy Goldkind took up photography at the age of 50. Here she talks about her bromoil work of dancers, geishas, and drag queens and how she found the bromoil process.

Interviewer / Malin Fabbri
Photography / Joy Goldkind

Joy Goldkind Bromoil
Bromoil Image#3218 by Joy Goldkind

What is that you do?

Joy: I do Bromoil and love to teach bromoil. I teach for cap/icp in NYC. short workshops on the basics of bromoil. I also wrote on bromoil for View Camera and photolife.
I also work in wetplate collodion using the digital and the historical together. I make a digital positive and use the enlarger to make an ambrotype. These are made with collodion and developed in the traditional manner.

What is it about the Bromoil process that you like?

Joy: Bromoil is a soft impressionist stye of printing. It is a way for me to soften a photograph and take the image a step away from reality.

What are the highlights and frustrations?

Joy: The best highlight is that my work is shown in so many places sometimes I can not believe where my work has taken me. Frustrations are like all photographers we want everyone to love our work but of course that is impossible.

What I have learned is love what you do, and make your work your own even if no one loves it but you.

Joy Goldkind Bromoil
Bromoil image #250 by Joy Goldkind

How did you come across and learn the bromoil process? Anyone that inspired you?

Joy: I took a workshop with Gene Laughter he always inspires me. He is always willing to share his technique and craft. I think I learned this as well as bromoil from him. He is my friend and mentor.

How did you fall into this? Was it your destiny?

Joy: Yes I do believe this was my destiny. I did not pickup a camera till I was 50 years old. I was in love after my first photo class. The darkroom was best place I could be.
I have a fine art background and painted in school so alternate processes where art to me. I wanted to learn them all. When I studied Bromoil it seemed the place my work fit the best. I still feel that way.

Joy Goldkind was 50 years old before she took her first photography class, though her background was always based in the fine arts. Despite an unusually late start, Goldkind’s career as a fine arts photographer has progressed rather rapidly. Her photographs of nude dancers, geishas, drag queens, ballerinas, circus performers, etc. have not gone unnoticed. Sometimes inspired from a fantasy world, the use of double exposures and slow shutter speeds help Joy to change what is true and expected into a more surrealistic scene.

Joy Goldkind Bromoil Dancers
Ambrotype Image#3736 by Joy Goldkind

The old world beauty and quality they possess is in no doubt influenced by a deep interest in art history. With the use of the historic Bromoil process as a tool to express her fine art portraits, Joy adds a layer of mystery to her photographs. Very popular in the early 1900’s, the Bromoil process was favored by pictorial photographers who used it to add a more artistic rendering to their work. Each piece is individually inked by hand, therefore no two prints are identical. Joy Goldkind currently resides in St. James, NY. Her work has been widely exhibited across the globe, most recently at the Museo Nationale Della Fotographia in Italy, Her photographs have graced the covers of international publications (SilverShotz and Eyemazing) , and have been featured in prestigious magazines (B&W , Zoom and View Camera). She received 2010 Sony World photo Awards commendation for wet plate collodion images. Her work is now being shown as a finalist in Madrid (World Gala Awards.) Goldkind is represented by some of the most prestigious galleries including Verve Fine Arts (New Mexico) , Tilt Gallery (Arizona), Wave Photo Gallery (Italy), Eyemazing Editions (Netherlands) and Her writing on bromoil was published in View Camera and Photolife Magazine (Canada) .

1 thought on “Interview with Joy Goldkind”

  1. Hello, I would like to ask a question regarding making Bromoil prints. When we bleach the prints we notice that the print “comes back” to almost a “normal” black & white silver print, much to our amazement. If we keep the print in total darkness it won’t return to this normal silver print but will remain in its bleached state. In your opinion should we proceed with the silver print in its “returned state” of a silver print that you wouldn’t know was ever bleached or should we ink up the print in the darkroom with the lights off?

    I know it makes no sense to ink the print in the darkroom with the lights off but only one person online makes any mention of this phenomenon. Is it only with us? We don’t understand why this is happening after we do the hypo and rinse steps after bleaching.

    Can you please lend us your advice as to what we may be doing wrong or maybe refer us to someone that may know what is happening?

    Thank you very much for any help you can suggest to us.

    Kind regards, Jeffrey

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