Reverse of cabinet card by E. Bosotock, Photographer of Schools, & etc.
Erasmus Bostock worked as a photographer in Derby from the mid-1870s, when he was probably apprenticed to William Pearson, one of the town's earliest practitioners, then operating from a studio in St. Peter's Street.  In the late 1870s and early 1880s he had a brief partnership with a photographer named Carr, during which time they worked from a studio at number 8 Macklin Street.  He established then established an itinerant trade as a "photographer of schools" from c.1882, not the only local to visit schools, but apparently the only one in Derby who advertised it as a speciality. 
Over the following decade, he appears to have concentrated on this type of work: of the dozen or so examples of his work from this period that I have hitherto come across, only one is a conventional studio portrait. Between 1891 and 1894 Bostock moved with his family to nearby Nottingham, where he probably took over a studio from Edward Carnell and continued in business until his death in 1919. 
Informal cabinet card portrait of unidentified group
Taken by Erasmus Bosotock of Derby, c. mid-1880s
This informal portrait of what is assumed to be a family group taken by Bostock in a suburban backyard therefore departs a little from his usual fare, and is an important clue to how photographers coped with lean times. I have written previously [5,6] of opportunistic photographers who toured residential suburbs, probably during winter months when business was quiet, looking for potential customers who wanted their photos taken in front of their houses or in their gardens. Some of these professionals worked out of established studios, but many left no mark on their card mounts or, if they did, are not traceable through trade directories.
It is interesting, then, to find such a portrait taken by a photographer who, it has already been established, travelled into the residential suburbs and, we now know, was a "door knocker" when the occasion arose. A small tidbit of information about one of Derby's minor photographers it is, but it adds to the developing picture of the common practices in Victorian Britain.
For more backyard beauties visit the rest of this week's Sepia Saturday contributers.
 Payne, Brett (2009) All lined up in the school playground in their Sunday best, Photo-Sleuth, 18 October 2009.
 Payne, Brett (2006) Erasmus Foster Bostock of Macklin Street, Derby & Nottingham, Derbyshire Photographers' Profiles.
 Payne, Brett (2008) More photos from St James' Board School, Photo-Sleuth, 14 September 2008.
 Payne, Brett (2013) Sepia Saturday 176: Erasmus Bostock, Photographer of Schools &c., Photo-Sleuth, 11 May 2013.
 Payne, Brett (2008) The story behind the picture, Photo-Sleuth, 8 April 2008.
 Payne, Brett (2013) Sepia Saturday 163: A photographer at the front door, Photo-Sleuth, 7 February 2013.