Two old albumen photographs around 1856-1880, back to back mounted on single page thin card. Is the work of Francis Bedford, 1816-1894, was one of the best known English landscape photographers of the wet-plate period. He worked extensively in the South West of England, the West Midlands and in Wales. Most of the negatives were taken after 1860. The few taken as late as the 1890s were the work of Bedfordâ€™s son.
1, This photo shows a Welsh woman in traditional Welsh costume using a spinning wheel outside a small Welsh cottage. 21.5 cm by 14cm. This photograph is of a very high quality in the Welsh womans costume, showing clearly each pattern of clothing from apron to scarf. The symbolic spinning wheel of self sufficiency, contrasting the wealth of old age to the youth in rags. He better get weaving and learn a trade. Card mount have slight crease on one corner, photograph perfect.
2, This photo shows Conway Castle. Measure 21cm by 15cm. This view has changed little over the last 120 years.
The ivy has been removed, the castle is earning its keep. Stephenson and Telfords bridge still stand witness to the constant queues of cars, todays age brings. A contrast to then not a cart or coach in sight. Find the single person hiding some where in the picture , can you guess or see where he is? The first correct answer to me, the prize a free set of 6 specialist postcards for the winner. (paired with Conway Castle, see Y736wc12, this price for both.
In a Keynote article, entitled Landscape Photography and its Trials published in the Year-book of Photography and reprinted in The Philadelphia Photographer Vol XIII, No 148, April 1876, Francis Bedford wrote as follows:- But it is quite possible on the roughest days to get good results with the exercise of a little patience. Of course, if wind blows continuously, as it does sometimes without cessation, landscape photography is simply impossible; but when it comes in sudden gusts, violent enough, perhaps, to dash the camera to the ground, there are intervals of perfect stillness, during which foliage may be rendered perfectly by uncapping and capping the lens at the right time. A plate carefully prepared, with a bath in good order, and then closely drained, will keep longer than is generally supposed, and it will be hard if one cannot, during half or three-quarters of an hour. Get the requisite two or three minutes exposure. But I would suggest here that he should, first of all, fix his camera-stand firmly in the ground, and then, with a stout string, suspend from the screw-head a big stone or other heavy weight. He will then be free from any solicitude for the safety of his camera, and can give all his thoughts to his work. Sometimes small shrubs or weeds in the foreground cause such annoyance by their motion when all else is still; these may be judiciously pruned without injury to property. If a bough of a tree obtrudes, or is otherwise troublesome, it is better to tie it back out of the way, and release it as soon as your view is taken . These photographs are mounted back to back on card see Y736wc12.