Ex Libris Annan, James Craig  (Scottish, 1864-1946)

In this Annan treated the photographic image as the basis for a graphic design. Ex Libris may have begun as a portrait of Dorothy Carleton Smyth, then a tutor in crafts at Glasgow School of Art. With the addition of ‘Ex Libris’ on the print and more specifically ‘Ex Libris Dorothy Carleton Smyth’ on another, a bookplate results. The platinum Ex Libris in Stieglitz’s collection measures 33.7 x 25.3 cm. which might suggest that Dorothy Carleton Smyth owned immense books. The photogravure Ex Libris in Camera Work is smaller, 20.2 x 15.2 cm., but still large for a normal book. Bookplates were then highly fashionable, though mostly the field of the illustrator or the etcher. Why not use photogravure? It could yield enough prints for a very large library. Yet few photographic bookplates were produced. (Buchanan)