Tim Berners Lee.
What an absolute rascal.
Not only did he shaft the chaps at Yellow Pages, the manufacturers of Fax machines and the purveyors of XXX filth in the Soho district of London, he’s made scrapbooks virtually extinct.
Their numbers are dwindling, reportedly below those of the Snow Leopard.
Before you could simply call up a hundreds images for any photographer or illustrator you care to mention, you could only reference those images if you owned them.
a) Buying a book on a particular photographer.
Fine, but expensive, if you wanted references of someone world-famous, like Irving Penn.
But not fine if you wanted references for some up and coming turk.
b) Keep all the photographers cards and pages you liked in a scrapbook.
I’ve come across a bunch of these in the loft recently.
What’s striking is the sheer focus you get by viewing only one or two images of a particular photographer.
The tyranny of choice we now face each time we need to commission an image can be confusing, particularly as there appears to be less specialism.
Most photographers now shoot everything under the sun; portraits, landscapes, still lives.
You name it they can put a camera in front of it and press the clicker.
(Often with surprisingly average results.)
Anyhow, here’s one of my scrapbooks, photography I liked, circa 1992.
Ironically, although it now feels redundant, I wouldn’t mind betting that most of these images aren’t currently on the net.
Let me correct that, weren’t on the net.