A few samples of my 1970s commercial work

Click on an image to enlarge, click HERE for my client list.

An experimental digital camera made with a 5x4” view camera of the type I used back then is shown HERE.

Back in the age of film, all approved colour trannies were precious one-offs which went straight to the client and were never seen again by the photographer, so this dozen 5x4” test shots and rejects are among the few I have left from my 1970s career. Photographers had complete control of monochrome work through processing and printing, and sometimes retouching, but colour film had to be processed to exact specifications, and of course there was no Photoshop magic to polish the result. Commercial colour photography was therefore specialist work where perfect pictures had to be created in-camera through the use of lights, diffusers, reflectors, baffles, filters, camera movements, multiple exposures and other tricks of the trade. Finishing touches like synchronising watches or filling displays were done, not in post but in the final shot. My day rate, in 2020-money, started around £400 in 1970 and grew to about £4,000 by 1980 - plus film, processing, printing, model fees, travel etc. Usage fees had not been invented and there were no hire fees - we owned all our kit - but some work needed large sets built or extensive travel. Prints were also a  good source of income, especially volume printing for press releases and murals for exhibitions, so I had four darkrooms nearly matching my studio space. Most work was monochrome, but colour grew in volume through my career, so in the end I had in-house colour processing and could have trannies like these ready on the light box for clients little over an hour after exposure, which was pretty cool 50 years ago.

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