Monday, September 15, 2008



Novelist and home-made apparatus were to the fore last week and despite a gloomy forecast by the secretary, the evening proved complete success. The most welcome novelty, possibly indirectly due to the splendid action of the Liverpool duckers consisted of the contents of a bottle labelled "whisky." which, divided amongst thirty to forty members, was sufficient to alleviate the feeling of resentment born of recent privations.
Mr. F. Ackroyd showed a Bunsen burner converted into gas fire-lighter. This is connected to the gas supply with a length of the familiar lexis’s metallic tubing with rubber connectors. Rubber gradually perishes on exposure to light and air and if the connectors are covered with adhesive black compounded tape (as used for insulating electrical joins) their life will be greatly prolonged. The same idea had occurred to other member, and they congratulated Mr. Ackroyd on his cleverness. Mr. Harpur pointed out that this flexible tubing frequently leaks, which can be prevented by winding round the tape throughout its length without any material lens in flexibility. "Hunt's tape" was alluded to as bring excellent. Mr. Ackroyd next (bowed a beer-warmer, which be said served the purpose of making tea in office hours. This was believed, as be is the antithesis of the beer warmer type. He remarked that the utensil bad a large hole in the bottom, yet had never leaked. Several references being made to "George Washing ton." are explained that as the bole in the metal gradually formed it lied up with a calcareous deposit. He then passed round the beer warmer, and those who bandied it noticed with considerable dissatisfaction a loose carbonaceous deposit on its outer wall. At this point Dr. Knott mistaking the office boy for a towel, a disturbance arose.
The Rev. Le Warne was the next star turn, and it can be said with esurience if be is as successful in converting erring humanity to better things as he is in converting apparatus to weird uses he must be a sky pilot of pristine quality. A handy retouching desk was shown improvised oat of studio dark-slide, and, like an ex-sinner, capable of backsliding at abort notice. The President. Mr. J. Keane then demonstrated the "Flying Corps" developing tank, a well designed and solidly contracted apparatus. It permits of the insertion of a thermometer into the developer without admission of light, a really valuable feature. Dr. F. Knott produced several unbreakable glass measures, which were severely tested by members and came through unscathed. Being composed of glass under tension when they do go only fine dust remains. To those whose halite is engendering feeling of uncertainty regarding the position and number of external objects, they should powerfully appeal.
Mr. V. Jobbing showed a home-made camera "with all projections flush with the front," a feature believed to be unique; also a folding walking-stick tripod. This and the camera illustrated skill in design and craftsmanship of the highest order. The shutter lad its release placed in front and therefore was actuated by pressure towards the body, an ideal way for minimizing any tendency to shake at the moment of exposure. Many others materially contributed to the interest of the evening.


The seventh meeting of the session took place on Monday, April 7, Mr. Young in the chair. A letter was read from Mr. Massie, hon. secretary of the Edinburgh Photographic Society, intimating that the proposed to invite the 1990 Scottish Salon to Edinburgh had been discarded owing to the unsettled conditions. He thanked the society for the interest which the members had taken in the matter.
Mr. Young then read a letter from Mr. Sutherland, secretary of the Edinburgh College of Art. Intimating that the society’s request for this formation of a retouching class had now been granted, on condition that Mr. Young should undertake the tuition personally. This Mr. Young intimated his willingness to do. The class would start in the autumn, and would be held twice weekly, from seven to nine in this evening. Mr. Campbell Harper expressed the society's indebtedness to the president for the manner in which he had pulled this matter through.
Mr. Young then brought up the question of the apprentice. He said that it was now time for the society to formulate a scheme of some definite nature. Letter after letter was being published in the "British Journal" on this question, and, in fact, since he had mentioned the theme in his October address, hardly a week had passed without some contribution of this nature. The P. P.A. merely groped around the subject. The first thing which the photographer could do for his assistant Mr. Young continued, was to see that he received a proper training, and the beginning of that was an apprenticeship. We lived in different times, and the old conditions no longer held good; and we must have some definite schema of modified apprenticeship. In two years' time, he pointed out, every assistant under eighteen yean of age would be compelled to attend classes during business hours, and the newly- arranged retouching class would then become a day class. He added that he would be glad to hear the views of the members on the object, and suggested that a committee be appointed to formulate a scheme.
Mr. Johnston pointed out that the public opinion of photography as a profession was anything but a high one, and hence the difficulty of obtaining boys suitable for apprentices Mr. Young thought that classes of various kinds would greatly help to alter this situation. Mr. Rush brook felt that this was a matter for all the photographers in Britain. It was pointed out, however, that the onus of making a start would devolve on some small body, and, a lead once given, the idea would spread. The great difficulty which all photographers experienced in giving an apprentice a good know-ledge of all the branches was discussed, and it was honed that by the growth in the number of technical sissies the master photographer would be relieved of much personal tuition. A committee, consisting of Messrs. Rush brook, Campbell Harper, and Johnston, was then appointed to consider the whole question and to make a report.
Mr. Johnston then made his report on behalf of the Exhibition Committee. He gave facts and figures regarding the New Gallery, Shandwirk Place. Three weeks would be necessary for the exhibition for the purposes of hanging, and the other two for the exhibition. The probable coat for this, including advertising, would be about 60. It was felt that it would be more dignified if the exhibition were not a competitive one, but a competitive class for assistants might be arranged. Mr. Young said that he was anxious to see this exhibition representative of all classes of photography. It was decided to bring the matter up for further discussion.
A scheme of co-operative advertising was then placed before the members, and the details explained. Some nine firms have so far expressed their willingness to enter into this scheme, which promises to be of great benefit to the profession in Edinburgh.


At the annual general meeting on Monday, April 7, good progress was reported. The president, Mr. W. F. Slater, F.R.P.S., who has worked o hard for the benefit of the society for the past two years, it well-known figure in photographic circles, and it is with some considerable regret that the rules of the society only permit his occupying that position for the above-mentioned period. As demonstrator and lecturer his services have been much appreciated, and the members present expressed their appreciation. The secretary reported a very successful year's working, with an increase of 33 per cent, in membership. The hon. treasurer reported that the year's working showed a profit, which is gratifying, as the year had been commenced with a balance-sheet showing a slight loss.
The following officers were elected.-President, W. B. Ash mole; hon. secretary, Ernest W. Brooks; hon. treasurer, W. F. Slater, F.R.P.S., F.R.G.S.; hon. curator and librarian, L. J. Blake; hon. portfolio secretary, E. C. Perry; hon. excursion secretary, J. Pick-well; hon. lanterns, C. H. Manger; committee Messrs. Gideon Clark, H. Creighton Beckett. E. R. Bull, C. H. Oak den, Horace Wright. H. Richards, W. H. Howard, W. McEwen, E. W. Taylor, W. E. White, Arnold J. Burt, and E. Gorfin. The new syllabus is now ready, new members are required, and professional workers are invited to join, as this society already includes a good few members of the trade. A copy of the Handbook will be sent free upon application to E. W. Brooks, 4, Ferndale Road, S.W.4. The next meeting at the Central Library is fixed for 7.30 p.m., Wednesday, April 23, when Messrs. Kerotype, Limited, are giving a demonstration of their Kerotype paper.

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