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Liverpool people will love this exhibition

18 September 2009 by Sam

As you can probably tell from my blog posts, I’ve been looking forward to the exhibition Liverpool People by Stephen Shakeshaft for months. The good news is that the exhibition is now open. The photographs on display present an honest and affectionate view of the many incredible characters that Stephen has encountered in the city over the last few decades. They are bound to bring back memories for many people, while the anecdotes that accompany them should raise a smile or two.

In addition to the photographs, Stephen’s old Micro Press plate camera that he used during the 1960s is also on display. It’s a real piece of history, and is fascinating to a digital camera user such as myself. I couldn’t imagine lifting it, let alone taking a half decent photo with it, so it really does bring home what an accomplished photographer Stephen is. He recalled about using the camera:


Stephen Shakeshaft looking at an old camera in a display case

Stephen Shakeshaft in the exhibition

“Using this camera was the perfect discipline for a young photographer and quite the opposite of today’s technology. To cover a football match at Goodison or Anfield I would have 10 slides which would carry 20 glass plates (5 x 4 inches), this gave me just 20 opportunities to get THE photograph.

The camera required strong shoulders, it was cumbersome but I carried it everywhere with me. In the dark room the only way to test if the plate had been loaded the correct way was to taste the emulsion with the tip of my tongue. Maybe that is the reason why I have silver hair today!”

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