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A Q&A with Rosie Pernet Hinde - John Hinde’s eldest daughter (28/01/13)

Do you remember any of the photographers?

Yes, two of them : Elmar Ludwig and E. Nagele. They were both born in Germany. Elmar established his own advertising company in Munich and is now semi-retired. Edmund, is a fellow of the RPS and runs a stock photography company. I know they were both recruited by my father for their technical abilities. I think Edmund is in one of the photo in the Nostalgic Ireland Book. (page 24. He is the guy sitting on the beach with a camera.)

Did your Father ever make any prints as opposed to only postcards?

If I remember rightly there were calendars, and also a set of prints made from paintings by an Irish artist, Kenneth Webb. I know that my parents went to Tenerife with this artist, who painted landscapes there. There may have been other places too but I don’t remember. Both my parents took painting lessons from Mr Webb.

Was your Father excited when the postcards arrived and did he bring them home?

I have no idea! As you know the business was started on the ground floor of their home. The printing machine was in one room there was a dark room for developing.

As the company grew, the postcards were boxed for delivery in my grandparent’s living room. So we were surrounded by postcards all the time. When they built the factory in Cabinteely in 1963 every thing was moved there. I don’t remember him bringing postcards home after that.

What do you remember about being in the postcards – i.e. do you remember if your Father asked you to pose in a certain way?

I have no recollection at all of posing for the Irish photos. I was very young at the time ( between 2 and 6 probably). However I do remember accompanying my father to Galway on one of his trips. We slept in a caravan and ate grilled mackerel! I also have a vague recollection of finding the time very long. I was probably very bored!

When my sister and I were 12 and 10 we accompanied my parents on a working/holiday trip to Kenya and Tanzania. He had to make a series of photographs for a new lodge that was going to open during the year. The lodge was partially finished and we stayed there for three days. My mother, sister and I had to pose for those photos. He had us standing in the blazing sun for hours while he took different shots. I still recall how irritated we all were.

We have found a lot of green ink on the many of the transparencies - mainly blobs and smudges. You mentioned remembering your Father coming home with huge piles of photographs and spending hours studying each photo individually and then writing scores of corrections (manually) for each one – was this on his photographs or all the photographers?

All of the photographs (it was probably the transparencies) were looked at and corrected for using or were rejected. I remember him writing on the transparencies in large capital letters, presumably this is the green ink that you have found.

Did you and the family travel with him when he went to Africa and other exotic destinations? If not, do you remember him going to such far off places?

No, apart from the one time cited above. My father spent many months away during the year. When my youngest brother was born in was in Nigeria and had been away for nearly 6 weeks. My mother travelled with him later on when we were in boarding school. Most to Kenya / Tanzania and Uganda and also to Bermuda and the Bahamas.

Did your Father take many photos of you and the family outside of postcard photography?

He did occasionally take photos, especially of the whole family together. However there are no albums of any pictures of us.

He preferred filming and made 16 mm films of us growing up, holidays, events, and also the trips he went on are on film. We have a complete record of what life was like in Ireland and England from the mid-fifties on.

We believe your Father retired to take up painting – did he paint much? Do you have many of his paintings?

Painting became a full time job. He was a perfectionist and like everything he undertook he threw himself into his hobby with the intention of learning everything he could on the subject. He tested all sorts of techniques and different styles. I have several of the paintings he did towards the end of his life hanging in our house

What do you think your Father would make of the fact that his and his photographers photographs will be exhibited in an art gallery?

He would be both pleased and honoured.

You mentioned that your parents travelled all over Europe after leaving Ireland – did the whole family go with them? What did they do around Europe?

You probably know that my parents met while working in a circus. They were both used to a nomad kind of life and putting down roots and staying put forever was probably not in their genes. Before becoming a photographer, my father trained for 5 years to be an architect. Throughout his life he never lost interest in this profession and over the years he designed 3 of the houses they built while moving from one place to another.
On leaving Ireland they moved to Gex in France just the other side of Geneva. They lived there for 4 years before moving again to St Paul de Vence in the South of France, which they really enjoyed as the climate, was so much milder. While there they travelled often to Spain for holidays and on one such trip discovered Mallorca, which they fell in love with. They eventually moved there and remained for 12 years. As they got older however it became very complicated travelling to and forth from the island to the mainland and the rest of Europe. They rarely flew as they had 2 dogs that went everywhere with them. My sister had in the meantime married a Frenchman and lived in the South West of France and in 1992 my parents decided to move back to France to be nearer some of the family.