As our TV screens, our iPhones and our computer screens bombard us with images of a 21st century Royal Wedding, I am transported back down memory lane to my own recollections of another royal wedding and the resultant photographs taken by me when I was the youngest photographer on the Sunday Times press core covering the wedding of Charles and Diana for the paper.
Ironically I have waited 30 years before seeing all the images that I captured on that day because at the time they were whisked away at great speed by motorcycle courier before surfacing four days later in a Sunday Times magazine special. Today’s press photographers will be beaming their images to satellites from their various positions on route , possibly seeing the printed versions within just 20 minutes of shooting time.
Recently when I visited the Sunday Times Archive I was able to view my 35mm colour transparency film images on a light box after 30 years of wondering what they had ‘come out like’. Leaning over the light box, I was transported right back to the early eighties and the crowds dressed in red, white and blue.
At the time I was more interested in the pictures I could take of the people – as the youngest photographer I was a bit low in the pecking order and I didn’t get a good view point of the procession – so I concentrated on going out into the crowds to capture the characters and eccentrics that make up all quintessential British celebrations. In the eighties it was punks frolicking in the fountains and crazy grannies with their grandchildren all dressed up…..what will it be this time?
Seeing these images for the first time nearly 30 years later has given me some closure, as they say, as the editing process is so much a part of the whole photographic business. I can rest assured that I wont have to wait another 30 years to see how today’s images turn out.