Between 1914 and 1935, Patrick Turner Mackintosh delivered
eight lectures to Wednesday Evening Meetings at EPS. Three
of these, in October 1918, 1919 and 1920 were President's Opening
The subject he chose in 1918 was: The Future of Photography.
P T Mackintosh began by reflecting on
the fact that :
- when EPS was founded in 1861
the country was recovering from the effects of the Crimean War
- today, at the end of the
1914-18 World War, the Society was still thriving
To those who would say that "the
day of the Photographic Society is done" and that "it is no
longer required in these days of mechanical perfection", he
"Away with such pestilent fellows off the
earth! Have faith
in your star;
have done with croakers and face the untried future with courage
We are no band
of done old men mumbling over the exploits of the vanished past,
rattling the dry bones of forgotten controversies."
He believed that today's societies
had a part to play in helping their members with a better
understanding to the instruments with which modern science had
provided them, and in broadening the artistic perception of their
The Future for EPS
After the War ...
Looking to the future, P T Mackintosh
after the War, we shall be able to branch out in new
directions, whether we shall ever attain to these new premises for
which so many of us have sighed, whether our membership shall be
increased to such numbers that we shall be satisfied, these things
are on the knees of the gods."
For the immediate future, he had
irrepressible young woman DORA
(was that some Government Dept?)
does not care much for our wandering round with our cameras as of
yore, and those of us who still expose plates are content , for
the most part, to snapshot the family in the back yard.
humble source of pleasure may soon be denied to us if supplies of
materials do not improve, and I am afraid that before long, our
good friends, the photographic dealers will have to follow the
example of the grocers and set up in their windows the notice: 'No
cameras, no plates, no films, no hypo.' "
The Future for
P T Mackintosh said:
"On the mechanical side I do not look for
any great improvements . The laws of optics and mathematics
are unchangeable, and it is difficult to see how lenses are to be
improved, if indeed further improvement be desirable from the
artistic and not from the press photographic point of view."
photography is certainly due for improvement, and those who like
that kind of thing will, I trust, get something better than the
rather crude productions of
He maintained that the future of
photography would lie not in further mechanical developments but
in the development of the art side of photography.