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Patron: Her Majesty the Queen


The Royal Scottish Society of Arts
Showcasing Scotland's Science, Technology and Innovation

5th Meeting of the 186th Session (2006-2007)

Digital Photography: pleasures & pains of a new art

Cairns Aitken CBE
Emeritus Professor of Rehabilitation Studies
University of Edinburgh

In the Wolfson Suite, Ground Floor
Edinburgh University Library
George Square, Edinburgh
On Monday 19 February 2007, at 7pm

Like many professional people during their working lifetime, an interest in photography was confined to family events and travels abroad took the photos, shop developed the films, prepared an album of the best and discarded the rest. I archived the negatives.

On retirement, performance of home PC improved so that old photos and negatives could be scanned, edited and printed for various projects, such as family albums for gifts or exhibiting. The pleasure was rewarding, but the time taken on the learning curve for success was painful - "where's Cairns? He's playing with his computer as always nowadays".

Digital cameras then became available, and importantly now at reasonable capital cost, and virtually no running cost to produce high quality photos, and so many are taken a revolution in mass technology within a few years. Cheap computer programs have become sophisticated, really more than necessary for preparing enjoyable outputs. Unfortunately everything does not run smoothly, and so to complete a project can be time-consuming and frustrating and so I will illustrate that Digital Photography for me can be both pleasurable and painful.

Prof. Aitken retired in 1994 from the University of Edinburgh, where he had been Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Vice-Principal. He then spent four years as Chairman of the Royal Infirmary NHS Trust during the planning of the rebuilding. He had trained as both a physician and a psychiatrist, but not as a manager, except from experience gained such as when Chairman of the Governors of Napier Polytechnic during the 1980s. His recreations involve people, places and pleasures of Edinburgh, Scotland and beyond.

Location of meeting

Society Business

The President, Professor Anthony Busuttil, will be in the Chair

Members of the Public are welcome to attend

Jane Ridder-Patrick, Secretary
Telephone: 0131 556 2161

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