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'Adminicle' is a little used word that means: an aid; an auxiliary.
Origin 1550–60; Latin: adminiculum – support.
I've used it here as the heading for a category where I'll post all kinds of brief articles relating to my interests in photography and beyond.

John Angerson's English Journey

Photo Histories: Published in 1934, J.B. Priestley’s English Journey became one of the most influential books in the nation’s response to the Great Depression. When photographer John Angerson retraced the writer’s footsteps three quarters of a century later he found a changed landscape, but one in which Priestley’s observations, and the observations of some great British photographers remain as pertinent as ever, writes Graham Harrison.

John Angerson's website.

Moore: A Rarity

The cover of the 1969 Anglo-Welsh Review, photograph by Raymond MooreWith such a large part of this site devoted to Raymond Moore, I like to include as much information as I can gather on the man to help 'put the record straight' on his key role in British photography.

I have nearly all of his published works (not that many were ever published) but one came up on eBay a while ago that I've never managed to get hold of before. I bought it, but then promptly mislaid it, only to discover it again during a recent reorganisation.

The 1969 Winter edition of The Anglo-Welsh Review has a cover photograph by Moore and a quite lengthy article within illustrated with eight of his photographs. The cover price of six shillings in 1969 is about £4 today, but in direct translation to modern coinage is only 30p. I got it for 99p, which I guess reflects the lack of awareness of Moore's legacy and the lack of interest in anything published about him.

It is quite an interesting read - much is reproduced from other sources, but there is some original material written by Moore specifically for inclusion. I have reproduced it in full in this article.

Anna Ray-Jones in conversation with Greg Hobson

 

In conversation: Anna Ray-Jones and Greg Hobson from Media Space on Vimeo.

'Only in England', work by Tony Ray-Jones & Martin Parr

The cover of the accompanying catalogue.An excellent overview of the recent exhibition (September 2013- March 2014) of work by Tony Ray-Jones. The first to be held at the London Science Museum Media Space, a new area devoted to 'photography and art'.

Visit the article here.

The review is by Brian Human, a regular contributor to this site.

The River Stort

Recently I received a request, via my Flickr page, from the developer of a website that aims to bring together all the various projects that are current and proposed for the River Stort by all the various organisations involved, from the Environment Agency to local 'friends of' groups. This new site is intended to give an overview and focus for organisers and environmentalists. The lead organisation is the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust.

The River Stort is my local river and over the years it has appeared in many of the photos I have taken whilst on walks. Only a few of these photographs have ever been published and their request had me searching through the archive to see what I had on file.

To make it easier for them to review the images I decided to add them as a gallery on here. When the site is complete, it may be viewed at www.stortriverpartnership.org.uk.

 

Robert Elwall 1953-2012

Photograph of Robert Elwall ©Gaby HiggsI only learned this week that nearly a year ago Robert Elwall, the photographic historian and photographs curator at the Royal Institute of British Architects, had died.

Robert was the author of many articles and books on architectural photography and its practitioners, most notably from my standpoint the definitive biography of Edwin Smith in 2007 entitled 'Evocations of Place', ably reviewed on this site by Brian Human. Both Brian and I had met Robert many times and he used information that we had gathered about Edwin in his book.

His dedication to his subject was legendary and his knowledge immense. There could have been no better resting place for Edwin's archive of negatives and prints than the RIBA, where Robert ensured that it was catalogued and made available to researchers into his work. He was always cooperative and generous with his time whenever we met and he shared our enthusiasm and appreciation of Edwin's work.

  • A full obituary was published in The Independent newspaper and may be read online here. Another in The Architects' Journal may be viewed here.
  • Helen Trompeteler, Assistant Curator of Photographs at the National Portrait Gallery, London, writes about Robert Elwall on her Camera Portraits site.
  • The RIBA renames its photographs collection in memory of Robert Elwall

Me & Edwin Smith at Arbor Low

Scan of a recent print made from a photograph I took in 1981 at Arbor Low.I've just written an article on my other site about a recent discovery made whilst reviewing my collection of photographs made at the prehistoric henge site of Arbor Low in Derbyshire.

It turns out that I had pretty much the same reaction in 1981 to a subject that Edwin Smith had photographed fifteen – or perhaps twenty-five – years earlier. Although in 1981 I had no knowledge of his image.

The whole journey of discovery made in writing the linked piece brought home to me the reality of digital photography compared to its historic counterpart. I wonder if in thirty years' time it would be possible to revisit a filed image  - even if it could be found - and create a modern version of it as easily? Perhaps fortunately, I am unlikely to be around to put this to the test.

Making Digital Negatives

This article was written a few years ago and is in need of updating. However, it proved so popular that I have included it here again in the hope that it may help those attempting this technique.

Read more: Making Digital Negatives

Nova Magazine & Duffy

In January 2010, I watched a hugely entertaining TV programme about the photographer Duffy (1933-2010): 'The Man Who Shot the 60s' (read about it on BBC iPlayer, watch it on YouTube). I've always been a great admirer of the work of Brian Duffy, who died later that same year.

Read more: Nova Magazine & Duffy

The Ten Commandments for Creative Photographers

First published in Camera Owner magazine in 1967.
Forty-five years on, how many of these still apply today? I've added my notes under each.

Read more: The Ten Commandments for Creative Photographers