Eamonn McCabe

I have been reading about the death of Eamonn McCabe (https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2022/oct/09/eamonn-mccabe-a-consummate-sports-photojournalist) and have realised that the very nice, very efficient photographer who was standing in the wings of last year’s Aldeburgh Literary Festival and took some unusually good action photographs of me on stage was none other than one of the greatest sports photographers of his generation, a brilliant picture editor who transformed the relationship between photography and print when the Guardian was redesigned, and was also, incidentally, the photographer who took a photograph of me when I went to the National Gallery, which the press office thought I should have stopped, thinking that it showed me in a bad light. I realise that he was like Jane Bown who I never met: very fast in summing up the best angle, so fast that the subject didn’t have time to pose, a form of naturalism which meant that it was about the subject, not the photographer, an entirely admirable virtue. I didn’t pay as much attention to the photographs he took in Aldeburgh as in retrospect I should, as it was a great honour to have been photographed by him, and so I post one of the set now in his memory, a tribute to a photographer who stood in the wings, but should have been centre stage:-


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