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photograph - Plums growing against a dry stone wall
  • Plums growing against a dry stone wall
    Potter, Rupert, born 1832 - died 1914
  • Enlarge image

Plums growing against a dry stone wall

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Eeswyke (Probably, photographed)

  • Date:

    14 September 1902 (photographed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Potter, Rupert, born 1832 - died 1914 (photographer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Albumen print on paper.

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Joan Duke.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Rupert Potter (1832-1914), father of the children's writer and illustrator Beatrix Potter (1866-1943), took up photography in the 1860s when it was still a relatively new art form. An enthusiastic and skilled amateur, he was elected to the Photographic Society of London in 1869 and later contributed to photographic exhibitions. Rupert assisted the artist Sir John Everett Millais (1829-1896), a close friend, by photographing backgrounds for paintings and sitters for portraits. His favourite subject, however, was Beatrix herself and his prolific legacy of several hundred photographs forms a broad pictorial account of her life from infancy to marriage.

Rupert was also a skilled landscape photographer. During the Potter family's extended summer holidays to Scotland and the Lake District it was Beatrix's delight to accompany her father on photographic expeditions. He photographed in particular the countryside around Eastwood in Dunkeld, Wray Castle near Ambleside and Lingholm on the edge of Derwentwater. This photograph of plums growing against a dry stone wall was probably taken in the grounds of Eeswyke, a favourite summer retreat of the Potter family in the late 1890s.

Excited by the possibilities of the new art form, Beatrix too became an avid photographer, inheriting one of her father’s old cameras, 'a most inconveniently heavy article which he refuses to use, and which has been breaking my back since I took to that profession.' (Journal, Friday 19th April 1895). Beatrix went on to employ photography in the service of her own art and, like Millais, she photographed details, particularly in the Lake District landscapes, that she later incorporated in her imaginative book illustrations.

Physical description

Photograph of plums growing against a dry stone wall.

Place of Origin

Eeswyke (Probably, photographed)


14 September 1902 (photographed)


Potter, Rupert, born 1832 - died 1914 (photographer)

Materials and Techniques

Albumen print on paper.

Marks and inscriptions

'Sep 14 [2 crossed out underneath 4] 1902'
Pencil inscription by Rupert Potter on verso.


Height: 112 mm, Width: 154 mm

Object history note

Photographed by Rupert Potter on 14 September 1902. Photograph given to the Museum by Joan Duke in 1983.

Descriptive line

Photograph of plums growing against a dry stone wall; albumen print by Rupert Potter, 14 September 1902.


Photographic paper



Subjects depicted

Dry walls; Fruit; Plums; Trees




Archive of Art and Design

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