French Glass Negatives

Nine 13×18 cm glass plate negatives. In pretty poor condition, on one the emulsion is damaged and lifting in several places. The rest are fairly grotty.

I bought these for just the one negative, which turns out to be one of the least interesting.

I also wanted to try out this basic flat copy system for negatives at home. Rather than digitising items at work with the Phase One kit which is little bit of over kill, and images then just sit on my hard drive, this way I might just be bothered to add them into my online collection database.

So a cheap and very nasty tripod? thats not going to last long. A Lightcraft A4 led light panel, again not the greatest but much better than some of the cheap ones where you can see the individual led light strips. This is almost uniformly lit. And my old Sony A5000 tethered to the Mac. It all works surprisingly well. The copy stand/tripod? will have to be replaced with a more sturdy reflected light system but the rest is fit for purpose.

This first one is just a mobile phone grab on the lightbox. Not bad but the Sony is better.

The Sony pic. Better than the mobile phone version but the capture software is pretty clunky and needs far too many clicks of a mouse.

I have no idea whats going on in these plates. This is some sort of celebration. Not sure if they’ve just picked up random items, brushes, rake, basket, puppy, flowers…. booze. There may well be some relevance to the items. I think the fella at the back has the right idea.

Some building somewhere, it looks impressive whatever it is?

I didn’t even notice the young boy leaning against the lamppost looking at the two people across the street.

A group sitting in the garden with the laundry drying in the background… I’m assuming that lad goes over backwards just after the plate is made.

The lady sitting with the basket below looks similar to the one sat at the table above. And now I’ve looked closer the lad has the same outfit.

Maybe someone will recognise some of the buildings and scenery?

A quick search online shows there are a large number of fountains in France! Its pretty fancy, if its still around it must be fairly famous.

I’d originally bought this job lot for this negative, which turns out to be less interesting than first expected. Granted it does have someone holding the background up so they are just out of shot. I do like an improvised studio setting outdoors.

This chap? I can’t make out the text on the books on his desk. If anyone would like a higher resolution crop to take a nosey at just let me know.

The print behind him is “Rouget de Lisle singing the Marseillaise, 1892” by Henri Meyer, so that gives us at least a starting date. So at least I’ve learnt that Rouget was responsible for writing, what becomes known as, the French National Anthem.

And finally, the Hotel Du Jardin d’hiver. Now, there is one in Paris and on Google maps but who knows how many “Winter Gardens” there have been.