Richard White Black & White photography

Profiles, Vale

Vale Richard White FAIPP APPLM MPhotogI

It is with a heavy heart that I am letting you all know of the sudden passing of one of Australia’s most highly regarded photographers and long-term member of the AIPP, Richard White FAIPP APPLM MPhotogI.

Richard passed away on the 7th of May from a heart attack at his home in Mansfield, Victoria, while being interviewed by one of the great landscape magazines ‘On landscape’ out of the UK.

From dear friend Mike Langford FNZIPP FAIPP APPL GMNZIPP GMPhotogIV:

Richard White was a very humble and private man with a huge heart and a very dry sense of humor. 

He shared his knowledge through his photographic workshops, calendars, books and regular features in Better Photography. 

Dancing Mountain Ash © Richard White

In many ways, he is the father of Photographic workshops in Australia, taking clients into his beloved Victorian and New South Wales landscapes, to share his passion of both photography, life and the environment. 

Using his large format 5″x 4″ camera and black & white film, his photographs are pure, hypnotic and serene. His work was described by many to be likened to Ansel Adams and Minor White – he was their Australian equivalent.

He subscribed to the belief that you need to be a master of the craft, before being able to express the art of the soul.

His work is the sublime expression of this philosophy – clean, studied and expressive. He taught many of us to slow down and to create studies of what we were photographing. To see, to understand and photograph with empathy.

Richard White portrait

This is something that will keep him in my mind and heart for the remainder of my life.

As a member of the photographic community and as a close friend of Richard, our deepest sympathy goes out to his family – his three sons Daniel, Sean and Lewis and his wonderful wife Jan, all of who he described as his reason for living.

Vale my good friend and fellow photographer, we will all miss you.

Richard White Black & White photography
© Richard White
Photo by Richard White
© Richard White
Richard White Black & White photography
© Richard White
Richard White Black & White photography
© Richard White
Richard White Black & White photography
© Richard White
Richard White Black & White photography
© Richard White
Richard White Quote


  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Gary Boseley

    RIP Richard….Thank you for the wonderful words of encouragement and support usually outside the front of the Mansfield Post Office…Your contribution to the photographic world and knowledge of the medium will be missed by so many…
    Thank you for the wonderful note of appreciation for your sons school photos…… I still have it all these years later and it meant so much to me back then as I was really struggling with the business and life.

    I will miss our irregular catch ups,
    discussing our common interests and how challenging the photographic industry can be..

    My deepest sympathies to Jan, Sean, Daniel and Lewis…

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Jeff Moorfoot OAM, BA photog RMIT, APPL, Mphotog V, FAIPP, HLM

    I had known Richard from the time we both served on the Vic council. We started sharing accommodation whenever the APPA’s travelled interstate, and were joined by Mike Langford, Ian Poole, John Bodin and Jackie Ranken and went by the collective name as ‘The Musketeers’ For over a decade we would gather come print awards time and share, argue, debate and laugh about all things, but mostly photography. We had a couple of honorary musketeers who would join us occasionally. David Paterson and Garry Cranitch are a couple who spring to mind. The passing of Poole and the putting out to pasture of some of us as judges led to the eventual fragmentation of our annual get together. Although quiet and apparently reserved by nature to the casual observer, in fact our Richard was most often the stimulus in many heated debates over the years. You will be sadly missed Richard!

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Eric Victor

    Richard’s black and white work was the vibrations of his soul. His tonalities, more than subtle, were the echo of his personality. From the deepest black to his light touch of the highlights, you knew that he had been completely immersed in the image and had left nothing to add. What a sorry loss to us all.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply


    My heart is saddened, he will be missed. I met Richard as a student of photography and his passion and kind sweet nature was infectious. His stunning imagery is an inspiration. Rest in peace Richard.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    John Bodin

    What a sad and sudden loss. Richard was a true gentleman, who upheld high standards of character and professional integrity. My condolences to all the White family.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Meaghan Tranquille

    What an awful and tragic loss. Richard was truly a master in all senses of the word. No one could shoot and print white on white like Richard. A quiet and humble man may he truly Rest In Peace. ❤️❤️❤️ much love to his family.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Louise Sedgman

    I was lucky enough to attend a small private workshop at his home a couple of years ago. Such a lovely man and so giving of his knowledge. He will be dearly missed by many.
    Rip Richard, It was a pleasure to know you sir.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    David Walker

    I remember first meeting Richard when he attended and presented at one of the AIPP Tasmania Freycinet weekends. He always seemed to start his presentations with a delightful story/joke, many of which I remember! However, as you listened to what he said and shared there was a deep dedication to his craft as evident in the work he produced. A great contributor & mentor to the AIPP members and Australian photography. Condolences to his family and friends.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply


    Saddened to hear of Richard’s passing. He was an inspiration as a master of his craft and certainly inspired me to strive for perfection in the darkroom at Black and White Photographics. His images were one of the reasons we gravitated to this industry.

  • May 9, 2020 - Reply

    Peter Kinchington

    Richard was always a pleasure to speak too with his friendly disposition. His passion for black and white large format photography was legendary. I always liked his practical approach to photography and he always gave technical guidance with clarity and unnecessary verbage.
    I truly felt part of the photographic community when speaking to him. Rest in peace mate.

  • May 12, 2020 - Reply

    Bill Bachman

    Reserved, provocative, fastidious, wry, sceptical, occasionally terse – all describe aspects of Richard, but for the soul of the man go to his timeless photographs. His was old-growth talent cut down way too soon. A great loss to his local community of Mansfield and its many fellow artists, and to the wider community of Australasian photographers, a great number of whom were educated and influenced by him. Condolences to the White family.

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  • May 14, 2020 - Reply

    Danielle Hodgens

    Danielle Hodgens

    Jan, Daniel, Sean and Lewis your loss is shared by many around Australia including several of us on the Atherton Tablelands, Queensland, and no doubt around the world.

    About 12 years ago Richard came to our rural property to run a workshop for four of us using 5″ x 4″ film cameras. We converted one of our bedrooms into a darkroom for the workshop. It was a fabulous three day workshop with Richard making us work about 10 hours a day with several short breaks in between.

    His passion was infectious, his skill and eye for a beautifully composed image was breath taking. He taught us how to, not only search for a beautiful image, but how to hunt for that image.

    I attended several of Richard’s workshops including workshops at your home, in Melbourne, Italy and Ireland and the skills I learnt from Richard I still use today event though I have now converted to the dark side and am using digital.

    I rarely saw Richard lose his cool with “disruptive students”, except in Italy when he had one too many wines after a long and difficult day of shooting in a hill village in Tuscany. He was always gracious, patient and so so generous with imparting his knowledge.

    I believe Richard and some of his colleagues have kept the art of film photography and darkroom work alive.

    For many of us photographers who had the good fortune to have been taught by Richard will always remember as being a master photographer, generous human being, devoted family man and having a great sense of humour.

    For you Jan, I met you a couple of times in your beautiful home and never forgot your kindness to us poor struggling students (trying to keep up with Richard) when you fed and watered us during workshops held at your home.

    Warmest Regards,
    Danielle Hodgens,

  • May 14, 2020 - Reply

    Sue Davis

    So sad to have heard the news of Richard’s passing. I have been a Richard White fan since 1995, such a beautiful photographer. RIP

  • May 17, 2020 - Reply

    Andrew White

    I am overwhelmed by the love and support for my “little brother”. We didn’t see as much of each other over the years, but managed to catch up when he was in Melbourne. Luckily I was able to talk to him just before he passed away. I will be forever grateful for that love and support that have been expressed in the messages. Kind regards Andrew

  • May 23, 2020 - Reply


    I was shocked to hear that Richard had died. I was reading his April newsletter only recently and contemplating signing up for another workshop: now that travel overseas will be so restricted. Richard introduced me to the quiet form of photography and Bruce Barnbaum who was one of my heroes I last saw Richard at the Ballarat International Foto Biennale in 2019 and remain stunned that a man so full of life is no longer with us. My best wishes to his family and friends.

  • May 26, 2020 - Reply

    peter campbell

    I was stunned to hear of Richard’s passing, in the prime of his life in such a sudden manner. Over the last 10-15 years I attended two workshops at Richard’s wonderful darkroom and studio in Mansfield. I shared his passion for B&W photography and his landscape photography is something for me to aspire to. My sincere condolences to his family.

  • June 14, 2020 - Reply

    Sue Hawkins

    I am so sad at Richard’s sudden passing – far to young and still much living to do. I knew him and his family back in the late 60’s in Chadstone. We caught up a few times over the years, and I will cherish a photo I have of his beloved snow gums.
    Kind thoughts to his family and friends. Rest gently.

  • July 29, 2020 - Reply

    Cary Hatakeda

    RIP Richard….It is your youtube videos that got me into 5×4 photography in the first place. I’m a avid 135 shooter using my old Nikon F, F2 and F4s and also shoot 120 using my RZ67. It was your videos on shooting large format that got me to purchase my Ebony RW45 before they closed down and now have a passion of shooting large format. I’m also a Fujifilm digital shooter and remember you being a X-Photographer is how I related to you when I shoot with my old X-E1. Thanks for giving us great memories and techniques and your passion will continue to inspire future analog photographers for years to come.

  • September 4, 2020 - Reply

    Graeme Brown

    I only shared several woks shops with Richard but felt his genuine passion in photography and his ability to educate others in his vision, I am saddened by his passing and am only left with his calender on my wall to remind me of his knowledge and dedication, I hope his family continue with his dedication.

  • November 24, 2020 - Reply

    Robin Hope

    Having just found out about the passing of Richard -I’m a very keen film photographer & used to read & watch his utube teachings I’m saddened & stunned to read this news RIP Richard & condolences to all family members ( Rob Hope )

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