Gandolfi bellows camera, c 1935.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Camera commisioned by the Home Office for taking 'mug shots' in HM Prisons. Founded by Louis Gandolfi (1864-1932) in London in 1885, the Gandolfi company soon built a reputation for quality camera design and construction. They had contracts to supply governments in Britain and overseas. Originally based in Westminster, and then Peckham Rye, south London, this family-run busines became Gandolfi Ltd in 1982 and moved to Berwick St Leonard, Salisbury, Wiltshire. The firm continues to produce hand-built cameras of high quality using traditional techniques and materials. Focusing in bellows cameras is achieved by extending or collapsing the bellows to increase or decrease the distance between the lens and the film.