British photographer Julia Margaret Cameron (1815 - 1879), was 48 years old when she received her first camera and her career as a photographer lasted only 11 years. Her talent, however, left her known as one the greatest photographers in history. Still, many of Cameron’s contemporaries considered her work to be inept, for it was blurry, smudged and scratched, and instead they believed that the best photography should be about technical perfections superseding all artistic intent. Cameron, however, defied such conventions and insisted on the view of photography as art through her production of dreamy photographs that evoked a unique artistry still influential to this day. Like apparitions caught in movement, lost in shadows, ready to dissolve, the figures in Julia Margaret Cameron’s work conjure imperfections, vulnerability and honesty, without quite undermining formality. The ghostly presences are summoned deliberately with the use of soft focus, long exposures times, shallow depths and low lighting, all of which combined with stains from chemical abuse, fingers prints, smudges and scratches, produce an aura of essence, of figures not quite transfixed in time and place, becoming familiar and intimate to generations of viewers. The imperfect photographs guarantee a certain authenticity—the way Cameron approached her subjects was, the way we take our portraits now: with affinity and immediacy and by someone who treats the camera as “a living thing” rather than as an instrument of precise technology and perfection.