Self portrait with camera
4 0 c m
actual image size: 27cm x 32cm

Self portrait with camera

© Royal Photographic Society/National Media Museum/Science & Society Picture Library


A photographic self-portrait taken by Walter Bentley Woodbury (1834-1885) in 1857. Woodbury is posed as if in the act of taking a photograph, standing beside a camera, holding the lens cap. Born in Manchester, England, Woodbury lived in Australia and Java. In May 1857 he sailed from Australia to Java where he was to run a successul photography studio until 1863. In September, 1857, he wrote to his mother in Manchester: The portrait I send has the date marked on it and in the future I shall always date them so that you can see if I improve in appearance or otherwise. In 1864 Woodbury patented the Woodburytype process, a form of photomechanical gelatin reproduction that went on to become popular in book illustration in the latter part of the 19th century.

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