Alan Burnett : The Collected Works

Crouching Photographer, Hidden Dog

I reach into an old box of 35mm colour slides and pull out three random slides for scanning, all of which date from the 1960s.

Fircroft College Room
Fircroft College, Birmingham : September 1968

The first was taken in the Autumn of 1968 and shows my bedroom at Fircroft College in Birmingham complete with Cuban posters and a picture of Karl Marx that was a constant feature of the cork pin-boards that framed all our student lives.

John & Doris Burnett
John & Doris Burnett 1967

The second was probably taken a year earlier at the Bradford home of my Uncle John and Aunty Doris – and their dog which has to remain nameless as my memory fails me. We always think of the sixties as an era of flower-power – but old photographs suggest that the flowers tended to be limited to the wallpaper and the chair covers.

Gladys, Albert, Norma, Roger & Di
Gladys, Albert, Norma, Roger and Diana Burnett  1965

The third photograph is easy to date because it shows my niece, Diana, as a baby, and she was born in 1965. The photograph almost has the look of an early “selfie” and one can almost imagine a selfie-stick – complete with mobile phone – extending from Norma’s hand. But this was the age of immobile Bakelite phones and crouching photographers – in this case, me.

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