December 5: Gynack Burn in the snow, Kingussie, February 1954

skr23
Saturday 5 December 2020

Gynack Burn in the snow, Kingussie, February 1954 (RMA-H-10700J). A half plate (6.5×4.75 ins.) glass negative from the Robert Moyes Adam Scottish Landscape Photography Collection.

Robert Adam was the photographer at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh from the 1910s until he retired in 1949. In his holidays he would travel round Scotland photographing the scenery, wildlife and the people, this output forming a unique record of landscapes and livelihoods that have changed or even disappeared since his time.

Plate glass negatives were used from the 1870s until superseded by film negatives in the 1940s. They came in a range of set sizes to fit the cameras and used the dry collodion process which allowed the photographer to prepare plates, then exposed them on location and taken them back to the studio to be developed – a huge improvement on the wet collodion (used from 1860) which had to be prepared, exposed and developed at the location, before the plate dried.

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