[Photographer, b. 1933, London, d. 2010, London.]
One of the great problems with photography is that any twat you give a camera to can take a photograph. What that does to the photographer is immediately create an inferiority complex within him because anyone can do it, which of course they can.
I went into a burning mode. I felt everything I had to do and say in photography had been done. [Irving Penn and Richard Avedon] fucked photography for us... They got there. (1979, On giving up photography and burning all his negatives)
Photography was dead by 1972. Everything had been resolved between 1839 and 1972. Every picture after ‘72, I have seen pre-‘72. Nothing new. But it took me some time to detect its death. The first person who twigged was Henri Cartier-Bresson. He just stopped—and started painting and drawing. God, he was useless.
Ninety-nine per cent of my work was advertising and crap. The people who were hiring me I didn’t like. Keeping a civil tongue up the rectum of a society that keeps you paid is an art which I was devoid of. I had nothing more to say in photographs. (1979, on why he quit photography)
Before 1960, a fashion photographer was tall, thin and camp. But we three are different: short, fat and heterosexual. (On ‘The Black Trinity’ of 1960s British fashion photographers—David Bailey, Terence Donovan, and Brian Duffy)
I thought, Gawd this looks dead easy compared to the drawing lark. I’ll give this a whiz. Take up photography as an easy way to make money. Just my sort of thing—women, gadgets, clothes—I must have a go at it.
I never wanted to be famous. I wasn’t as steady as a tripod.