Alice Hughes

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Alice Mary Hughes (1857–1939) was a leading London portrait photographer specializing in images of fashionable women and children.[1]


Hughes was the eldest daughter of the portrait painter Edward Hughes (1832-1908). After studying photography at the London Polytechnic she opened a studio in 1891 next to her father's in Gower Street, London which she operated until December 1910.[2] In her day, she was a leading photographer of royalty, fashionable women and children producing elegant platinotype prints. During her most successful periods, she employed up to 60 women and took up to 15 sittings a day.[3] In 1914, for a short period before the First World War, she ran a business in Berlin but returned to London at the beginning of the war, opening a studio in Ebury Street in 1915.[3][4] The Ebury Street studio was not as successful as her first business and she closed it in 1933, retiring to Worthing where she died after a fall in her bedroom in 1939.[5]

From 1898 to 1909, she contributed several hundred portraits to Country Life. In 1910, she sold 50,000 negatives to Speaight Ltd.[5]


A pioneer of portrait photography, Hughes developed a distinctive style "by fusing the conventions of society portraiture with the cool, monochromatic tones of the platinum print." (From Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.)[3]



  1. ^ Hacking, Juliet. "Hughes, Alice Mary". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/65306. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ^ "Alice Hughes", National Portrait Gallery. Retrieved 11 March 2013.
  3. ^ a b c "Photographic Studio", UCL Bloomsbury project. Retrieved 11 March 2013.
  4. ^ Helmut Gernsheim (1962). Creative Photography: Aesthetic Trends, 1839-1960. Courier Dover Publications. pp. 238–. ISBN 978-0-486-26750-0. Retrieved 11 March 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Hughes, Alice Mary", photoLondon. Retrieved 11 March 2013.

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