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  • Writer's pictureDavid

"Found photos" - time travel ?

A 'found' photo to me at least is a print or a negative picked up somewhere that has no connection to you (yet). I started to pick these up when I saw them because i liked the image, it was a familiar location or they were about to be binned. It can be quite hard to work out what a negative is in a dark and gloomy junk shop but every so often you hit the jackpot. Sometimes I can work out the story - an earlier blog talks about this album - a Scots Engineer working on the railroad in the US.

A recent box of glass plates (half plates - wet plate collodion) after a lot of cleaning up were for the Baines of Rotherham brass foundry - presumably for a catalogue - they reminded me of the work of US photographer Edward Weston...

Holiday snaps can also be insightful

The bridge is in Inverness.

I recently purchased a box of medium format negatives belonging to a Glasgow amateur photographer who meticulously recorded the where and when of every image - neatly placed into a little envelope. 99% were Clyde steamers (PS Jeanie Deans in 1950 below) except this great image of a locomotive at Strathpeffer, also in 1950. Scanning and cleaning up each image probably takes a half hour.

This last image is special - it was taken by my wife's grandfather - a great lover of ships - it was in a real mess but its a brilliant image. It was found at the bottom of an old suitcase. Its the steamer St Columba on the Clyde giving it 'yeeha' (technical term). It was badly scratched and torn so has a lot more photoshop work on it than I would like but the image was so good it was worth it.


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