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Edward Drummond Young

Edward Drummond Young  -  1933 ©
Edward:  Photographed in 1933

1876 - 1945


Edward Drummond Young



Edward was the son of William Drummond YoungEdward was born on 13 October 1876 and died on 28 April  1946.  Edward's full name William Edward, Drummond Young, but he was usually known as Edward (or in the family known as 'Buffs').


A grand-daughter of William Drummond tells me:

"One story I heard about both of William and Edward was that they were refused membership of the RSA because they were not considered real artists because they were photographers as well.

You may know if this sort of rivalry  went on in the early years of the last century."

Whether or not Photography should be regarded as one of the Fine Arts has been a contentious issue since the mid-19th century.

It has been the subject of many debates at the PSS (Photographic Society of Scotland) and EPS (Edinburgh Photographic Society).

Acknowledgement:  Mary Powell, niece of Edward Drummond Young for the details above.  Mary tells me that she has a  lovely pastel painting Buffs did of her from a photo he took about 1940. I believe he exhibited it at the RSA.  It has an exhibition number on the back.      - January 2009


Edward Drummond Young


Thank you to Linda Muller who wrote:


"My grandfather (my mother’s father) was John Drummond Young.  Edward, John's brother, was always referred to as Uncle Buffs in the family. 

 I have a painting by Uncle Buffs."

Linda Muller:  January 28, 2012


Edward Drummond Young

Awards in Exhibitions

Edward Drummond Young won many awards.  A list of awards was printed on the back of his photos in the late 1930s

Photograph by Drummond Young  -  probably around 1940 ©       The back of a photograph by Drummond Young  -  probably around 1940 ©

On 5 April1926, E D Young was congratulated by his fellow members of the EPPS (Edinburgh Professional Photographers' Association) on having been awarded 1st prize of $500 in the Middle Atlantic Estates Photographic Exhibition.

[BJP 1926, p233]


Edward Drummond Young

Lectures to

Edinburgh Photographic Society

Edward Drummond Young, son of William Drummond Young, was born around 1877 and died around 1946.  He, like his father, trained as both an painter and photographer.  He spent some time painting in Paris and gaining experience in USA before joining the family business in Edinburgh. [DYF]

He wrote a book: The Art of Photography.

Edward was a member of Edinburgh Photographic Society in 1890 or earlier, and between 1925 and 1937,  he gave nine lectures to the EPS.


Photographic Portraiture and Composition


Photographic Portraiture and Composition








Composition in Portraiture


To Boston and Hudson Bay on a Tramp


Print Criticism in reference to Composition




Criticism of Prints at Members’ Exhibition



Edward Drummond Young

Photograph Albums

Edward Drummond Young presented a paper to the Professional Photographers’ Association in 1911, recommending a standard size of photographic album using a standard size of mount, approx 11ins x 7.5 ins that could be used to accommodate photographs of sizes from cart de visite to, say 8 ins x 5 ins., all of which would be mounted on a standard size of mount.

He regretted the demise of the  ‘old fashioned albums’ that had previously been  used to hold cartes de visite and cabinet prints.  He said that reasons given by his sitters for ordering fewer photos were that:

-  These big mounts are awfully nice but they get so soiled

-  They take up so much room

-  Can't afford to frame them all

-  They are stuck all over the place.

This topic had previously been discussed at the Edinburgh branch of the Professional Photographers' Association.  The Edinburgh branch had endorsed this idea and had arranged for several albums to be made up.

Edward Drummond Young added:

What we need ins nothing like the old and nothing like the new snapshot or postcard albums, but a receptacle for the best in photographic portraiture, the collection and preservation of which is to be encouraged

[BJP:1911, p407]


Edward Drummond Young

Full Length Portraiture

Edward Drummond Young delivered a Lecture to the Annual Congress of the Professional Photographers' Association held in Harrogate, Yorkshire, in April 1937.

He illustrated his lecture with slides of his own work and of the works of the painters: Rembrandt, Hals, Rubens, Jeburg, van Dyck, Raeburn.

[BJP: 30 April 1937,  p273-5


Edward Drummond Young

Panchromatic Plates

Almost 20 years after the paper, Photographic Albums, was published, the BJP published another paper by Edward Drummond Young. 

His subject, Panchromatics.  Here are some extracts from his paper:

"For over twenty years, I have used panchromatics and for the last eleven years used them entirely for portraiture, and I may say with satisfactory results.

The flesh rendering is so much truer, more luminous and without that course grain ad exaggerated pores of the skin that ordinary emulsion often shows.  Red or fair hair is much better

An additional benefit is the correct rendering of coloured patterns in dress materials and uniforms with decorations.  The outcome of this better rendering in colour values is a better rendering of textures.

In my experience the earlier panchromatic emulsion was not at all so fully sensitised to the red ...  With the increased red-sensitiveness, I began to find the over-correction.  I then painted the reflection surface of my lighting cabinet with blue, and found this improved matters."

Edward Drummond Young commented

"Possibly the type of subject calling for most care in lighting is the fair pink gentleman with closely cropped white hair;  if the lighting should get too much to the side, the flesh and hair will merge in value, but the slight  shading by placing a shade or screen between the light and the sitter, not too far forward, will at once bring the different values into sight and they should photograph correctly.

[BJP: 2 May 1930, p255]



Drummond Young Pages



Duncan and John

Drummond Young Limited

Photos and Drawings

Trotters Club

Edward in

Drummond Young and Watson