Bill Rowlinson

Discussion in 'Photographers' started by RH Designs, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser Advertiser

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    Master printer Bill Rowlinson has sadly died at the age of 78. There is an obituary in today's British Journal of Photography here. I had the privilege of meeting Bill 15-odd years ago at his flat in London and the memory of seeing his prints gently glowing in his dimly-lit living room is still vivid today. A true master of his art, and a true character. RIP Bill.
     
  2. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

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    I was lucky enough to have met Bill a few times and had many very long telephone conversations with him, usually starting at 2am or 3am in the morning, about our mutual love of black and white printing. I arrived home from Canada this past weekend to learn of Bill's passing and mourn the loss of a friend and perhaps the last of the truly great traditional printers not to mention the magic he created when toning prints.

    RIP Bill, I'll toast your memory with a large single malt.
     
  3. Jon Butler

    Jon Butler Subscriber

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    Farewell Bill,
    Those halcyon days.

    Thanks for posting Richard.
    JON.
     
  4. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    Bill Rowlinson sounds like someone I would love to have met. R.I.P.
     
  5. ooze

    ooze Member

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    It's such a pity that not many great printers have a book of their work published. Only thanks to books, a wider audience has an idea about the printing of Adrian Ensor, Steve MacLeod, Larry Bartlett et.al.

    The first time I've read anything about Bill Rowlinson is in Adrian Ensor's book, accompanied by the same portrait as in the link above and I've always wanted to know more about the man since.

    Regards,
    omar
     
  6. tim rudman

    tim rudman Member

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    I agree with you. Knowledge, skill and experience are gained slowly and with much work and dedication. It's a terrible loss when that knowledge goes to the grave. Bill had toyed with the idea of doing a book and had been approached about it years ago but writing books wasn't really his thing. We talked about this a couple of times but he was quite dismissive of it in his latter days, but I think he would have liked to have left something behind.

    He very kindly dug out a print for me that I asked to include in my toning book. He was very weak by then and walked with difficulty but after a few weeks found this 20x16 for me to copy.

    He lived a very lone existence in his latter years. Having been told he was going to die from cancer he held his own wake, gave away his beloved cat Esme so that she wouldn't be left lone - and then didn't die for 10 years, by which time many people thought he was 'gone' and he lived alone in relative obscurity, and sadly without Esme.

    A great loss

    Tim