19th century Brewster-type stereoscope

A remarkable item has landed the Gomez-Velasco camera collection: A 19th century Brewster-type stereoscope.

Stereoscopy (also called stereoscopics, or stereo imaging) is a technique for creating or enhancing the illusion of depth in an image by means of stereopsis for binocular vision.[2] The word stereoscopy derives from Greek στερεός (stereos) ‘firm, solid’, and σκοπέω (skopeō) ‘to look, to see’.[3][4] Any stereoscopic image is called a stereogram. Originally, stereogram referred to a pair of stereo images which could be viewed using a stereoscope.

Most stereoscopic methods present two offset images separately to the left and right eye of the viewer. These two-dimensional images are then combined in the brain to give the perception of 3D depth. This technique is distinguished from 3D displays that display an image in three full dimensions, allowing the observer to increase information about the 3-dimensional objects being displayed by head and eye movements.

Stereoscopy – Wikipedia

All the carved Brewster-type stereoscopes I have found. like this one, are from the 19th century.

The is a this 1870-1879 French Brewster-type stereoscope made in France, sold for a wopping US $712.45.

This other stereoscope is dated circa 1910. Sale price: £189.00

Below is the closest model I have been able to find. This one has slightly sharper edges and the woodwork and engravings are different, but the general shape, mirror hatch, and eyepieces are almost identical:

This instrument is a trapezoidal-shaped box with curved edges made from mahogany for viewing pictures in 3 dimensions. In front, two converging lens eyepieces adjusted for focal length with rack and pinion mechanism.

The whole supported on a brass-telescoping pillar with black painted tripod feet. On the opposite side of the lenses, two lateral openings for the insertion of stereoscopic pictures on cardboard or tissue and a sheet of frosted glass to diffuse the light through the tissue picture.

On top, a hinged mirrored door that acts to reflect light for frontal illumination of cardboard pictures The mirror is in poor condition. Internally, the box is darkened and is divided into two parts with a center partition that prevents each eye from perceiving the image of the other.

Sir David Brewster (1781-1868) was a Scottish physicist who invented the kaleidoscope and this reflected light lens stereoscope. He also discovered the polarization phenomenon of reflected light.

Brewster Stereoscope Mahogany 19th Century ($500!)

Conrad Heyer: The earliest-born person ever to have been photographed?


Conrad Heyer (1749–1856) was an American farmer and veteran of the Revolutionary War who is notable for possibly being the earliest-born person to have been photographed.

In 1852, at the age of 103, Heyer posed for a daguerreotype portrait. He thereby became the earliest-born person of whom a photograph is known to exist. The claim is not without dispute, as the following men were also photographed: a shoemaker named John Adams, who claimed to be born in 1745; a Revolutionary War veteran named Baltus Stone, with a claim of 1744; and a slave named Caesar, with a claim of 1738.

Source: https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Conrad_Heyer

Acerca de Fox Talbot


The phrase ‘Fox Talbot’ is so harmonious and rolls off the tongue so easily that it is almost universally used for his name today. Many of his contemporaries who did not know him well did the same. However, this form of address was most certainly not warmly embraced by the subject himself! The ‘Fox’ so often associated with his surname was one of his given names, as it was a family name of his mother, Lady Elisabeth Feilding (the outspoken daughter of the 2nd Earl of Ilchester). Perhaps out of deference to Lady Elisabeth, Henry signed some of his books and journal articles ‘H. Fox Talbot.’ In fact, Talbot was known to family and close friends nearly always as ‘Henry’. He signed his letters ‘H.F. Talbot’ or ‘Henry F. Talbot’ far more often than ‘H. Fox Talbot’.
The Fox was only a middle name and Talbot’s surname was never hyphenated, but it is not unusual to see it so treated in secondary literature. In fact, the occasional library card catalogue has Talbot filed under ‘F’, a problem made even more serious by the ubiquitous computer sorting of today. But even this confusion in sorting is not a new problem – in 1823, Henry wrote to his mother from Naples that “I observe you always direct to me Fox Talbot by way of discrimination, but it does rather the contrary. For, the letters are here distributed from different windows, according to the different letters of the Alphabet, and the other day I found no letter for me under T, and accordingly asked for letters for Mr Fox when they immediately produced one from you”.
Further evidence that Henry himself had little enthusiasm for the ‘Fox’ is revealed in an a letter of 1842 to his mother on the birth of his only son: “You know we had fixed on the name Charles Henry, but if you wish it we can make it C.H.F.T. Constance says she is quite willing.” Even the reluctant offer to incorporate the F. here was not a reference to the family name of Fox, but rather a homage to his beloved late step-father, Admiral Feilding.
A final clue to Talbot’s own feelings on the subject is the fact that among the more than one-hundred photographic prints and negatives that Talbot signed himself, there is not a single one – not a one – where he used the word ‘Fox’ as part of the signature!

Gomez 1951 029

Gomez 1951 029, originalmente cargada por Mr.FoxTalbot.

Foto sacada en Bilbao a finales de los años 50. Presumiblemente por mi abuelo Vicente. Los que sale son mis tío Jesús, Javier, Ignacio y Pedro de mayor a menor.

Es raro que sea un negativo cuadrado, por el tipo negativo y de desenfoque se parece a mi Rolleicrd LLB. Lo raro es que mi abuelo tenía una cámra de 6×9 y una de 35mm, pero no una de negativos cuadrados de formato medio. Por lo tanto esto se sacó, bien por otra persona o con una cámara que le prestaron.

Por el tipo de desenfoque de los árboles del fondo (el bokeh famoso) podría ser una Rolleicord (llevaba veiente años en el mercado).

Once Per Day

Rolleicord IIb

Laboratorio Fotográfico en La Bagatela


En vista de los pocos laboratorios fotográficos  abiertos al público que hay en Madrid, el Futuro Laboratorio Fotográfico de La Bagatela ya está preparándose! La idea es ampliar la oferta de talleres de La Bagatela ofreciendo cursos de fotografía analógica y de revelado y positivado en blanco y negro.

¡Seguiremos informando!.