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Phillip Toledano's project "Days With My Father" is nothing but open, honest photography and feelings laid bare. Almost overwhelming but completely compelling, the project is a series of photographs of Phillip's elderly father who was suffering badly from a lack of short-term memory. Facing what many of us may have to, Phillip recorded some beautiful moments, some haunting, some funny. I'm touched that he could be so brave as to make this available to the public, and he himself is humbled; he's had over a million hits to the website and received hundreds of emails. There will be a book in 2010.

Thanks Phillip, you owe me and a million+ other people a box of tissues.

From "Days With My Father" © Phillip Toledano

pelosi_steve_pyke.jpgSteve Pyke, MBE, seems to be pretty much the busiest artist I know right now, so many others are hurting for work. That said, I doubt Steve's paused often on his 30+ year photographic journey. In the late 80's my agency syndicated his work and I remember lots of actors and musicians, but what I never knew till now is that he worked with Peter Greenaway on a couple of my favourite films, Drowning By Numbers and The Cook The Thief.

Steve: I've got the Hob Nobs, I'm just waiting for you to have a minute to put the kettle on.

Very current Pyke: On view through December 19th a small show at BLT, and his photographs illustrate a new book, 'Conversations on Ethics' published by OUP.

Nancy Pelosi, minutes before she heard the news she had made Speaker of the House, 2006 © Steve Pyke




Karsh_QEII_Philip_1951.jpgLady GaGa dressed in a sort of Elizabethan-style bright red latex outfit for the Royal Variety Performance in Blackpool last night; she got hoisted 20 feet in the air to play the piano and then went and shook hands with QEII and Prince Philip. Fabulous and priceless. I'm sorry I've got no GaGa so early QEII will have to do.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. 1951 © Yousuf Karsh

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Armed with stacks of C prints for the archive back when we worked together (pre-digital) Jim McCarthy's photography always caught my eye for its vibrancy. Jim may be best known for his lively colour photos from New Orleans Jazz Fest, an event he's been covering since 1993 and which is now an impressive body of work, but he's generally a great gig shooter. Jim's signed up for representation with the Rex Features agency so congratulations and here's to resale, wherever it may be.

Tony Bennett, Jazz Fest 2009 © Jim McCarthy

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I'll say one thing for the Interweb, it's terribly handy for getting back in touch with people. My old mates at Shoot in London have been repping photographers and stylists for many years now and as I dropped the owner an email after too many years, I learned she's still working with Ray Burmiston. From All Saints to the Birthday Party, Spice Girls to Tenacious D, Ray has been photographing musicians since leaving his own band, the Passion Puppets, in the early 80s. Another entertaining music archive for your viewing pleasure and Ray also shoots fashion and portraits.

Kelly Osborne © Ray Burmiston

Stetsasonic-Brooklyn-1988-.jpgThe New York Times ran an article today about the City Council's recent ruling to ban roll-down gates. The ban is supposed to improve quality-of-life and to allow police to look in during an emergency. Street photogs, you have till 2026 to record the character of your neighbourhood.

Stetsasonic, 1988 © Janette Beckman

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With no end to her talent and determination in sight, my old mate Julie Mihaly has launched a new online magazine, Boom Underground, a source of musings and retrospective analysis of the Baby Boomers' impact on society. Julie is a photographer, writer, designer and producer, tirelessly creative and wickedly funny.

From "Notes in Passing" © Julie Mihaly

1-Dirt-Hill.jpgThis is just the tip of the dirt hill from Thatcher's series 'The Kids', and it made me feel a little bit carefree today for a short moment. I miss summer. More to come from the land of Keats soon.

Dirt Hill © Thatcher Keats



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There is a new play opening in January 2010 about Muhammad Ali called 'Fetch Clay, Make Man' by Will Power. Karsh photographed Ali in 1970 for 'Look' magazine.

"Muhammad Ali arrived at my New York studio with a breathless young editor trailing behind. They had jogged together from the 'Look' offices, the young editor carrying Ali's heavy portable telephone which Ali said kept him in "constant contact with the world." Since the editor was a slight young man, I smiled to myself as I imagined this improbable duo and the incredulous stares of the passers-by as they made their way up Madison Avenue."

Muhammad Ali, 1970 © Yousuf Karsh

Karsh_Mailer_Norman.jpgThis photograph from Karsh's Norman Mailer sitting caught my eye today. When the Karshes arrived at Mailer's house in Massachusetts, Mailer said "I hope you can spend the evening, I'm planning to cook dinner for you." I don't suppose that happens too often these days.

Norman Mailer, 1974 © Yousuf Karsh

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