GOLDEN MEMORIES in black and white

a monochrome glance at my childhood

I’ve talked about the distinctive qualities of black and white photography before on these pages, and how it has an uncanny ability to capture the spirit and mood of a subject far more intensely than colour. It’s something the greats of the genre understood and exploited brilliantly; from the epic landscapes of Adams, and the deeply personal portraiture of Karsh to the lyrical life observations of Bresson; they all utilised the cleansing distillation of grey-scale-monochrome to the ultimate dramatic effect.

However, while the great masters took black and white photography to the level of high-art, equally nostalgic monochrome images were being snapped countless millions of times by less gifted photographers across the globe. And while their results might not classify as works of art, they nevertheless rarely fail to evoke and to entertain.

The images presented here are intended as a case in point and offer a small glimpse into my childhood, growing up in suburban London, which for all its fatherless challenges was almost as idyllic as it looks…

Summer , Edgware, 1963-ish, our back garden “pool”, with me and my big brother Michael and our lovely neighbours, Peter and Susan Gerard
Same garden, different amusements, summer 1966, with Michael again, and assorted neighbours and school friends…
Edgware, Spring, 1967, in the kitchen, Michael and I using our baking sets. We both developed a keen interest in food and cooking from an early age, although I seem to recall that the results of this particular session ended up being fed to the birds…
London Transport Museum, Covent Garden, London, 1968; Being the nephew of Sidney Pizan, one of London’s top fashion photographers had all sorts of perks, like having the run of a fabulous steam locomotive during a shoot for Burberry. That’s Peter Morgan, one of Sidney’s assistants/apprentices setting up a shot with the Polaroid. Incidentally, the legs of the male model standing on the footplate above me belonged to soon-to-be-007, George Lazenby, who began filming On Her Majesty’s Secret Service a few weeks after this photo was taken.

4 thoughts on “GOLDEN MEMORIES in black and white

  1. With few exceptions, I have never been as enamored of black and white, but I agree it sometimes captures things much better.
    A relative near my own age and I have recently discovered each other through the medium of old family photos, which have a special charm for those involved.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Adam your photos are indeed,memorable. Love the photos of you with your brother and friends, they’re gorgeous. Hope you and Dido are settling well and happily so. Keep well and posting more. I still have your painting by the way. So many memories , yes it’s true Adam . This goes for most of us . More photos please .Gblessxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I wish you the best in this new period. I have moved myself and I have found some of these treasures too…
    Your photos are marvellous!
    see you soon

    Liked by 1 person

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