Moonrise in the Catskills

Moonrise in the Catskills

Editorial comment on this plate:

Our picture this week is a successful attempt of a difficult photographic feat. In it, a moonrise in the mountains is very satisfactorily depicted. The scene is in the village of Red Hook, Dutchess County, New York, and about eighteen or twenty miles from the Catskill Mountains. Mr. Edward Leaming, author of the picture, modestly writes that ”there is not much difficulty in taking such a picture, the main thing being to be on hand when the sunset occurs, and when the sky has an interesting cloudy appearance, with clear spaces between.” But we must differ somewhat from him in this matter. The picture was made (so he tells us) with a specially constructed camera, “the first of its kind in this country,” and with a single lens about twenty-four inches focal length, the stop used beingĀ f/32. The plate (a Cramer “30”) was developed with the ferrous-oxalate developer, the exposure being about two seconds. Mr. Learning further writes that he considers the picture “well rendered for a process print.” It is a photo-gravure by the Photo-Gravure Co., of N. Y.

Original copy for this entry posted to Facebook on August 23, 2012:

The subtleties and sheer beauty of ink on paper printing hit home for me while going through a volume of The Photographic Times from 1890 recently posted. Specifically, the photograph “Moonrise in the Catskills” by American amateur Edward Leaming is one of those images that sticks with you because of the incredible tonal range it achieves through the hand-pulled photogravure process. For sure, it is an image of simplicity that can never be truly appreciated in the digital realm but one I’m glad to bring your attention to nonetheless.

Moonrise in the Catskills

Image Dimensions12.9 x 18.0 cm | published January 17, 1890 | issue No. 435

Support Dimensions20.5 x 28.7 cm