To 3 star or not to 3 star, that is the question.
As I progress through the hundreds of photographs I have already digitised, some decisions have to be made. Many of our photos are good enough to display as they are with little adjustment. Many need work and some need extensive work. Some are just so amazing that I can't wait to share them. And these make up the 3 star images. They are incredible photos but they have technical flaws. One day, if demand and resources allow, they will be fully restored using the latest technology. But for now they are as good as I can get them.
I have also found some curios. Images that Beattie and his team either took or acquired. Today's lot included photos of the prison ship Success tied up at Hobart dock. Wikipedia that one, it's a fascinating piece of history. As the image is signed by Beattie, I assume the copies out there on the Internet were taken from his photo. And then there are the photos of the first South Pole mission by Amundsen, another one for you to Wiki. History tells us that John Beattie developed the plates when the ship docked in Hobart. I assume Beattie had permission to make copies, because they were displayed in his museum.
He was clearly an important photographer, but I have no illusions that Beattie was a saint. The copyright laws were different and so was the culture. Sharing and displaying treasured photos was widespread. We may think of Instagram, Facebook and Flickr as new concepts, but they are not. Photos are meant to be shared, most of the time.
I hope you enjoy them.
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The Beatties Studio blog will provide some behind the scenes information on the studio, the collection of historic old Tasmanian photographs and the digitising process.