Julia Margaret Cameron’s Working Methods

Not mobile photography but something to savour on New Years Eve, 2015. One of my favourite British Portrait Photographers of all time, Julia Margaret Cameron. Exhibition curator (at the V&A) Marta Weiss explains Julia Margaret Cameron’s unique working methods, and the personal touches in her photographs that make her work so highly regarded today. Enjoy…


Transcript of the Video

She was using the wet collodion process, and this was a very cumbersome process. The photographs were made onto glass plates. These are large glass plates, all of her prints are contact prints, so whenever you see a Julia Margaret Cameron print, you know that the negative had to be at least as large as the image that you are looking at. So, these are large glass plates, they’re fragile and they have to be coated with a number of different substances at different stages in their processing. There are a lot of opportunities to make mistakes, and Cameron was a very exuberant character, and you feel her energy when you look at her photographs. She was so excited about this new way that she was making art, that she was expressing herself artistically. In Cameron’s photographs, there are all sorts of things that other photographers would have dismissed as flaws, but what she seemed to embrace. So for example there are smudges, there are even her own fingerprints sometimes on the photographs, embedded into the photographic negative. There are smears, there are swirls, and today, I think those imperfections are very attractive to contemporary audiences, because we can see that these are handmade objects. These aren’t the cool, precise results of a machine. And we really get a sense of an individual artist who produced these works of art.  

Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website—— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: [email protected]