“I made plenty of mistakes and learned something from most of them but that is inevitable if you don’t want to play safe”
– Gerry Cranham
We are delighted to offer prints by British photographer Gerry Cranham.
Born in 1929, in 1957 Cranham began his career as a photographer full time, publishing his first photo at the age of 28.
Cranham has worked with many newspapers and magazines such as The Watch, Sports Illustrated, Time and The Evening Standard. His work is in the collection of London's Victoria & Albert Museum.
He travelled widely. His pictures take us to 1960s London and New York, show us intimate moments with the Shah of Iran and so much more. We will adding more images from his vast archive in the coming weeks.
In 2019, he recalled how his career began:
“I had to give up athletics because I injured my foot, so I became a coach and bought a camera to take pictures of the guys I was training, and it all started from there. It was trial and error as I wasn’t trained as a photographer. I just made a dark room in the coal cellar, it was so primitive, but I just picked it up…
“They were very restrictive on allowing people in, so I’d just buy a ticket and start shooting from some obscure spots, and luckily my stuff started to stand out. I’d always try and do something that was different, that was daring. There wasn’t the opposition or competition then if somebody was very different, it stood out. I was also very persistent because I had a wife and five children and there was a lot of income to be earned – I couldn’t afford failure!
“My biggest inspiration for developing my own style was my need to feed a family of seven. My work simply had to stand out, it was not much of a choice”.
Outside of sport he was sought after by the newly launched colour supplements and when Winston Churchill died in 1965, the Sunday Telegraph chose Cranham ahead of a host of Magnum photographers for the key position in the Whispering Gallery at St Paul’s Cathedral. When the picture picture editor was asked about this he replied, “He never misses."
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