The Photographs of

Alfred G Buckham

Welcome To The Captain Alfred Buckham Website!

Brief Synopsis

Born in 1879, Alfred was a true pioneer in aviation photography. His  photographs of clouds, aircraft, landscapes and seascapes have received worldwide acclaim. He produced some of the most outstanding aerial photographs of London, Scotland, New York, Central & South America, Egypt and others. Proprietors of his photographs include the Getty Museum, the National Galleries of Scotland and the Royal Photographic Society. Examples of his work have been shown in many exhibitions, art galleries and can be found within many websites.

He worked in open aircraft, battling the elements with the associated problems of intense cold, enduring regular soakings and being sprayed with engine oil. And if the elements were not enough, he had to operate within the confines and dangers of open aeroplanes whilst standing up to take such stunning photographs. Furthermore, his camera, constructed with collapsible bellows, required protection in the form of a home-made design of metal plates – without which not only would permanent damage to the mechanism be caused, but also would have resulted in camera malfunction. It should also be remembered that he had to change his photographic plates whilst in the air – not an easy task!

In 1905, Alfred began his career as a photographer. Within a few years he had won thirty-three awards for his work. He joined the Royal Photographic Society in 1913 and was elected a Fellow the same year. He went on to become a teacher and demonstrator of photographic techniques at the Borough Polytechnic Technical Institute in London.

He endured numerous plane crashes (9 in total), resulting in the loss of his voice box at the age of 39. Although this made working at high altitudes even more challenging, not only for communicating with the pilot, but also made breathing more difficult. Yet he continued to take the most incredible photographs.
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