Monday, February 27, 2017

Group Portraits in the Studio

Today it seems, everyone carries around at least one camera, all the time. They take pictures of their lunch, their dog and things lying on the ground. And "selfies" are the popular portrait today. With all that convenience it's easy to forget that in the early days of photography, getting your picture taken involved finding a photographer (within a half day's travel), going to his studio on a sunny day (by appointment only) and waiting a week (or maybe two) to see the resulting portrait.

In the studio, usually on the second floor over a hardware or grocery store, one had to sit very still for several seconds, without moving eyes or lips to get a sharp portrait. There were braces and stands to aid in holding a pose.

It was difficult with the slow film and clunky camera equipment and fidgety subjects, especially children.

Even more difficult were the group portraits, where everyone had to pose rigidly still, stare at a spot somewhere in the distance without blinking, clench the jaw to reduce facial movement and generally hold very still while the photographer removed the lens cap from his big box camera and counted off the exposure time in seconds before replacing it. It was quite a production.

On this page LOST GALLERY has collected some of those group photographs posed in the studio, mostly from the closing years of the 19th century.

Germain Family
As always, if it's more than three, it's a group.
And as always, just click on the picture for a larger version.

Cabinet Card Group of Six
Cabinet Card mother and four children

Cabinet Card family
Cabinet Card family
Cabinet Card Five Gentlemen
cdv five women

Cabinet Card six women
Four Women

Seven people
Family of six

Cabinet Card family
CDV family of six
Family of four

Sutherland Family
CDV Nine people

Cabinet Card Family
Dad and three sons
Cabinet Card family
Cabinet Card Family of five

This row is a bit more contemporary
Two guys, two girls
Four men
Rppc group
Family of four RPPC

Cabinet Card Family of Four
Cabinet Card group
Two Women, Two Men
Cabinet Card Family of Five

Cabinet Card family group
Cabinet Card group

Where's Papa?
The family. Life is hard.
Cabinet Card family
Cabinet Card Family

Dad with 2 girls and 2 boys
family interior enhanced

Mom, Dad and two young adults
One brother?
Mom and three kids
Dad and six kids

Man, wife, two daughters, one son
Mom, Dad and four.

Mom Dad three kids, Peru, Ill
Two women two girls
Mom, Dad and two

Livia and family with minor restoration
Grannie Strader family of 6

Six children, ma and pa
Dad, Mom and three

Just one of the sisters.
Family Group
Family Portrait
Studio Portrait of a family

Group Germain
family interior enhanced

Six children
Two families

Family Cabinet Card
cabinet card couple
Four ladies

Nine boys
Group of Four

This row is much later. You didn't have to hold still as long. See the baby in the last portrait
Other interests.
Family Group
Portrait for five
Family Portrait

Family portrait
Family of Seven

Cabinet Card family
Hostetter and Family

Cabinet Card Family of Ten
Cabinet Card family of five
Cabinet Card
You'd think he could have at least leveled the camera.

Cabinet Card family of five
RPPC Four Hats
Cabinet Card four with wicker chair

Cabinet Card family of four

Family group

Sometimes a professional group portrait is not in a studio at all. It might be "on location" as the movie makers sometimes call it. It does not change the fact that it is a professionally arranged and photographed portrait. Here is one such portrait, not in the studio but certainly professional work.

Can't get enough? Watch this space!

Bassingbourn 1944 384th Bomber Group, B17 landing
Long lost negatives taken during the winter of 1944-45 at Bassingbourn AAF base in England.

Area 51 and a Half Area 51 and a Half You are probably not authorized to see these.

Don't take my picture! Oh! You DID didn't you! completely unaware of the photographer This is a collection of photographs that usually disappeared on the way home from the photo processing shop.

And don't miss
Cabinet Card Gallery
Square America
Tattered and Lost
Vernacular Photography
The best
sites on the web.
And for postcards try
Go see what's going on over at
Sepia Saturday!

All images are the property of Lost Gallery and the author. Permission must be granted for their use. All rights reserved.

THE KIDS Lesson one.
It is always a mystery how a photograph of any of these precious children could end up lost or abandoned. Here are a few. You will probably say "Ooh..." at least once.

Dee and the Business School Dee and the Business School
The beautiful Dee. A curious story; What do you see?

What's going on HERE?
Neiffel and Helvetica Typehigh

"What are they doing?"


Blog Archive