The Mother of Photography
Today is the birthday of Julia Margaret Cameron, the mother of photography, who was born on this day, in Calcutta, in 1815.
In 1863, Cameron was given a camera by her daughter and son-in-law and made her first photograph at the age of 49.
Her niece, Virginia Woolf wrote, that the camera was,
“at last, an outlet for the energies that she had dissipated in poetry and fiction, in doing up houses, in concocting curries, and entertaining her friends."
At the time, Cameron had moved to the Isle of Wight; an island off the southern coast of England.
On the Isle of Wight, Julia Margaret Cameron converted a henhouse in her garden into her darkroom and another building into her studio.
One of her most famous photos is called The Rosebud Garden of Girls, a phrase is taken from Tennyson’s Come Into the Garden, Maude.
The photo was taken in June 1868. It shows four beautiful, young, Victorian women wearing the white robes you'd find on a Greek goddess.
The setting is a lush garden. Their hair flows freely down past their shoulders. They each hold blossom as they each cast their gaze far off in slightly different directions.
It’s a very dreamy, almost trance-like, innocent image; The Rosebud Garden of Girls.