As one of the first men to devote his life and creative energy to photography, Frank Sutcliffe moved away from the confines of Victorian photographic conventions, which were based on artifice, and set himself the task of photographing the people and the countryside that he saw around him in as truthful and straightforward a manner as his equipment would allow. Although it was not in his character to publicise his own success, he was hailed by his contemporaries as one of the most original and outstanding photographers of his day. Despite his rarely leaving Whitby, Sutcliffe's work was known, exhibited and copied all over the world. Michael Hiley has traced Sutcliffe's writings on photography, many of which are to be found only in newspaper archives and specialist photographic libraries. They reveal details of how Sutcliffe went about his work as a photographer and his opinions on every subject from the artistic potential of photography to the art of handling recalcitrant babies in the studio, providing a unique insight into the attitudes and preoccupations of a photographer in the late Victorian period. As the son of a painter, Sutcliffe was aware both of the unique qualities of photography and of the debt it owed to painting. The years of his greatest success were years of unprecedented upheaval in both painting and photography, and this book sets out to establish the relationship between Sutcliffe's work and that of the leading photographers and painters of his time. This book brings together the best of Sutcliffe's work - pictures taken for his own pleasure from family albums, exhibition photographs which won prizes all over the world, examples of his work as a professional portrait photographer, and snapshots from the Kodak collection, which reveal a second burst of creative activity late in his career. This book contains 64 duotone plates and over 80 illustrations in the text.
This 1974 paperback first edition is in an acceptable, used condition. The dustjacket shows considerable signs of wear and tear and is fragile at the folds, spine and corners. It is rubbed and turned along all edges with some small nicks along the top edge in particular. The pictorial soft cover is in a better condition. The text block appears unmarked but is yellowing and has been well-thumbed. There are small, black ink marks along the long edge of the text block.