This listing of the photographers and studios operating in Brisbane from 1855 to 1901, is an abridged version of the print publication 'Capturing Brisbane'.
Challinor, George Miles
George Challinor emigrated to Moreton Bay in 1849 and moved to Ipswich where he lived and worked with his cousin Dr Henry Challinor. He began to advertise his Photographic Rooms in Ipswich at the end of December 1857.
In late July 1861 he established a studio next to the Courier Office in George Street, Brisbane, which was soon known as Challinor’s Photographic Rooms. The Brisbane visit ceased with the closure of the studio on 31 October 1861, and he returned to Ipswich. George Challinor was the first photographer in Queensland to take carte de visite photographs, introducing them in June 1862. He sold his business at the end of 1863.
Challinor’s Photographic Rooms
See George Challinor
Burrow Child claimed to have attended the Royal Academy in London and was living in Melbourne at the beginning of 1885. He opened a photographic studio in Yass, New South Wales in February that year for about a month. He also claimed to have worked for Boyd in Sydney and Poul C Poulsen in Brisbane, likely between 1885 and 1890.
He worked with Edward Hutchison and Samuel Duncalfe in Rockhampton in early 1890, and then with Duncalfe in Burrow Child & Co. As Burrow Child & Duncalfe they opened the Elite Studio in Cairns in 1891, though that arrangement ended in 1892. Child made his way back to News South Wales soon afterwards.
Clark, James Bolton
James Clark was operating a photographic studio in Shoreditch London from 1880 to 1883, before moving to Brisbane. He may have been in early partnership with John J Hogg travelling in the south-east of the colony in 1886. His photographic studio in Ann Street, Fortitude Valley was operating by January 1887, and he recorded the summer floods. Clark worked from his Ann Street studio until 1890. By 1891 he had moved to Geelong Street, East Brisbane, and operated his business in the suburbs until 1906.
Clark, Matilda Emma
Miss Clark of Ann Street, Fortitude Valley took photographs around 1889-90. It is most likely to have been Matilda Emma Clark, the eldest daughter of James Clark, while working in his Fortitude Valley studio. Matilda would have been 15 or 16 when taking photographs but does not appear to have continued working after her father moved to East Brisbane.
Clune, James Joseph
James Clune joined with Louis Nagel to form Nagel & Clune in mid-1887. He had taken a lease on property in Ann Street, Fortitude Valley by January 1888, from which they ran their business. Clune stayed in Brisbane when Nagel left in July 1888 and continued to run the photographic business under his own name until May 1890 when he left Brisbane for the south.
Collin, Gustave Antoine Alexandre
French-born Gustave Collin arrived in Brisbane with his parents around 1867 to take up farming. It is believed he worked with Albert Lomer after the latter arrived in Brisbane in 1874. Collin married Alice Chandler, Albert Lomer’s sister-in-law, in February 1879. He was noted as manager of the Lomer studio in Queen Street, Brisbane by March 1879 but may have held that role earlier.
Collin entered a partnership with Francis Keogh in January 1883 to operate A Lomer & Co. The partnership was profitable and lasted until January 1894. Gustave Collin retained the business and debts, and eventually sought new partners in a limited liability company in February 1894, in which he served as Managing Director. The firm was not the financial success it may have been hoped and from June 1899 it was unable to meet its debts. Soon afterwards Collin became insolvent and left the company. Lomer & Co continued to trade in a reduced capacity until early 1904. Gustav Collin did not continue with photography
Colonial Photographic Company
Sydney photographer Barcroft Boake formed the Colonial Photographic Company specifically to take photographs of Brisbane and its suburbs. It followed a successful venture he had commenced in Sydney in September 1870. There is no evidence Boake travelled to Queensland at that time, and the Colonial Photographic Company commenced operations from Margaret Street, Brisbane at the beginning of November 1870 under the management of Frederick Nainby. Nainby is not believed to have been a photographer, and Frederick Rogers was noted as the company’s lead photographer.
The business model of this company had been borrowed from England, where photographs were taken of the business and private residences within a town, and prints sold to property owners. The project appears to have drawn to a close by the end of November, and no further reference has been found of the Colonial Photographic Company.
Comley, Richard William
Richard Comley arrived in Brisbane in 1865 and was recorded as a photographer in Refuge Row, Queen Street in 1866. No other details about his photographic business have been located. His name has sometimes been incorrectly transcribed as Cornley.
He moved to Rockhampton in October 1866 and stayed for a year but does not seem to have operated a photographic business there. He returned to Brisbane by June 1867 to acquire a chemist business in Spring Hill, qualifying as a chemist and druggist around the same time. Comley did not return to photography.
Cooper , Charles Leighton
The early life of photographer Charles Cooper remain obscure. In 1888 he was living with fellow photographer Philip Badier in Paddington, Sydney. Cooper moved to Singleton in June 1893 to open his own studio there, and then on to Port Macquarie by March 1894. He was in country Queensland by August 1894, and in Brisbane by 1897. He worked as a photographer from his residence in Shakespeare Street, Coorparoo until 1906, when he moved to Didsbury Street, East Brisbane.
Coura is a mystery photographer. He set up at Sandgate where he advertised during June and July 1882 to take portraits and views of houses and businesses. Coura claimed to have been previously with Daniel Metcalfe though no supporting evidence has been found. Nothing more is known of him.
George and Elizabeth Cranstone arrived in Brisbane in early 1863. They established the Brisbane Dining Rooms in Albert Street opposite the Wesleyan Chapel in May. From June George Cranstone advertised as a photographic artist operating from the same address. The death of their adult daughter Lucy in August 1863 may have prompted the family to move on, and there is no further record of the photographic business or family in Brisbane.