Nineteenth-Century Photographer Frederick Hollyer (17 June 1838 - 21 November 1933)

Frederick Hollyer

The aim of Frederick Hollyer was to teach the man in the street the beauty of the art of the day, and to make possible the adornment of the rooms of those who cannot afford to buy paintings with copies of the works of the best masters of today and yesterday, as well as those of old times, and to offer to painters, wither for their own reference or for reproduction, true monochrome presentments of their work ~The Photographic News, February 7, 1908.

Frederick Hollyer was the son of Samuel Hollyer and Mary Ann Hudson born in London in 1837. He was a photographer who trained as a reproductive engraver in mezzotint.   He opened a studio in London in 1870. His platinum print reproductions were highly regarded and did much to popularize his works in Britain and abroad. Just ask some of his contemporaries: Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Frederic Leighton, G.F. Watts, and Sir Edward Burne-Jones. Alongside his work he also made a great many revealing and intimate portraits and made landscape photographs, among them views of the Thames, some of which were reproduced in The Studio (1893).  He prided himself on his technical skills and advocated making ‘untouched’ negatives and prints meaning images which had not been altered by retouching at any stage during the photographic process. He joined the Royal Photographic Society in 1865 and became a Fellow in 1895. In 1893 he became a member of the Linked Ring, a society formed to support pictorialism in opposition to the Photographic Society. He was a member of the Solar Club and became one of the Founder Members of the Professional Photographers’ Association in 1901. . He retired from active work in 1913 and died at Blewbury, Berkshire at the age of ninety-five on 21 November 1933.

 May Morris
 John Ruskin
William Morris

Samuel Hollyer Sr, (Frederick's father), by Frederick Hollyer. albumen carte-de-visite, circa 1870s, NPG

 Frederick Hollyer by Frederick Hollyer, albumen carte-de-visite, 1860s, NPG

Frederick's wife, Mary Anne Hollyer (née Armstrong) by Frederick Hollyer, albumen carte-de-visite, 1860s, NPG

The Hollyer and Armstrong families by Unknown photographer, albumen print, circa 1873, NPG


Their son, Frederick Thomas Hollyer by Frederick Hollyer, albumen carte-de-visite, circa 1875. NPG

Frederick Hollyer with his daughter, Eleanor Mary Hollyer byUnknown photographer, albumen carte-de-visite, mid 1870s and 1880s, NPG


Maggie Peters said…
Great post. I have always seen Hollyer's photographs but didn't know anything about him or what he looked like! He had adorable kids!
Kimberly Eve said…
Hi Maggie, Thanks for commenting. I was curious to know a bit more about this famous photographer. Not much out there!

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