We spent a few delightful days in Edinburgh last week where we were blessed with cold bright skies, warm bright company, and peaty bright malt whisky. I came back south on the train on Saturday with a suitcase full of memories and a bag full of books. One of my best discoveries was made in the bookshop of the Scottish National Gallery where I found several of the publications of the Scottish Society for the History of Photography, which, I must confess, I had not come across before. As time goes by I become more and more fascinated by old photographs and the beautifully produced and illustrated biannual journal of the Society - Studies in Photography - was a delight to behold. I bought the full range of available copies from the Gallery shop and immediately joined the Society on my return home.
A couple of other books I bought in Edinburgh also reflect my passion for images - A History of Photography, which is a guide to the George Eastman House Collection of historical photographs; and Slightly Out Of Focus, the World War II memoirs of Robert Capa, one of the finest photographers of all time.
My final book in this quartet was waiting for me when we returned from Edinburgh and that is a splendid volume entitled Yorkshire to Ballarat Goldfields Part 1 which had been sent to me all the way from Australia by the author Graham Beanland. My mother's family were Beanlands and I made contact last year with Graham, who has researched and written about the Beanland family in Australia. I look forward to discovering more about my families' adventures in the Ballarat goldfields.