Project Development

Corpus Christ College revisited

My initial visit to the chapel revealed that the surround to the altarpiece (which contains a copy of Ruben’s Adoration of the Shepherds) obscured partially the bottom of the window.  However, it seemed likely that the enclosed gallery at the west end might afford a better view.  Sadly, that gallery formed the entrance to the College Library, which was closed during the summer holiday until early September.

This follow-up visit proved that the sight lines from the library entrance were prefect – indeed better than the floor level in the chapel, from which my original photographs were captured.  However, being separated from the chapel by a large glass window was less than idea, particularly as the chapel side of the glass was far removed from being clean!

It seemed sensible to photograph the bottom portion of the window in sections, so three batches of images were captured at higher resolution than the original edited image.  Once edited an resized, this highlighted a surprising level of softening at the edge of the original image, since the newly edited text (photographed at the centre of the frame) was substantially sharper than the original fragments of text.

615 - CROP Corpus Christi - temp (not full text)

Section of original edit, with partially obscured text

615 - CROP Corpus Christi - St Christopher and the Christ Child

Newly edited text

615 - Before and After (PNG)

Full width before and after new edit

The east window depicts St Christopher and the Christ Child by the artist Henry A. Payne and is the only example of Arts and Crafts glass in Oxford.  Completed in 1931, the window is a memorial to the Revd Charles Plummer (1851-1927), Fellow from 1873 and Chaplain from 1875 to his death.  The figure of St Christopher reflected Charles Plummer’s charitable work among the children of the Poplars School in Cowley, a school built by the Oxford Poor Law Guardians of whom Plummer was chairman.

The finished image is the result of the manual exposure blending of 23 photogrpahs.  EXIF data:

  • Canon EOS-1D X Mark II
  • Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L II USM
  • 120mm | ISO-50 | f/8.0
  • Exposure range: 1/20sec – 8sec

615 - Corpus Christi - St Christopher and the Christ Child

Dominic Price (2019) St Christopher and the Christ Child [Henry A. Payne, 1931 Corpus Christi College Chapel]

I was interested to learn that the glass window through which I was photographing is due to be replaced in the coming months by an etched glass window.   The etched design is being limited to the periphery of the glass so that a view of the chapel’s stained glass window is still afforded from the Library.

On the back of the work I have currently done, I have been asked if I would return to photograph the new window once installed.

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