Sunday, 21 May 2017


1985: British Film Year
From the plasters on Peter Sellers head I would guess that this photograph by Bill Brandt is from an Inspector Clouseau film. I always enjoy film stills and also the lighting used in photographs from the classic era of movies
The photographer Angus McBean used lighting in his portraiture in a highly individual way. He was invited to photograph Vivien Leigh as a young actress in a stage performance and would continue to photograph almost every performance from stage to screen for thirty years. The stamp shows a photograph taken in 1938.
The photographer Howard Coster specialised in photographing men so Alfred Hitchcock fits that gender specific requirement. I think this might be one of a group of photographs he took in 1936.  The stamps in this British Film Year set all have signatures on them in gold which shows up better on the stamps themselves, although not brilliantly so.  The choice of photogravure printing by the designer Keith Bassford doesn't help.
2004: Black Heritage
 A six year campaign and about a quarter of a million signatures eventually brought the singer and actor Paul Robeson to grace one of the Black Heritage stamp.  His fight for social justice, equal rights and his socialist politics made it a controversial choice for some and indeed his passport had been revoked in 1950 for which he had a long fight of eight years to get back. Not only a wonderful voice but a fighter for justice, the quote from when he performed a interracial concert in 1949 and was attacked by a racist mob while the police stood by shows his courage   “I’m going to sing wherever the people want me to sing … and I won’t be frightened by crosses burning in Peekskill or anywhere else"  The photograph is from the studio of Annette and Basil Zarov.
2016: Shackleton and the Endurance Expedition
 Next we have an heroic photographer, Frank Hurley, part of the Shackleton expedition to Antarctica, war starting as they set out in 1914. The iconic picture of Endurance being crushed in pack ice (80 miles from their destination) in 1915 is probably the most famous. Eventually having to abandon the ship
and camp on the ice it would not be until August 1916 that everyone, incredibly, was safe.  Frank Hurley not only photographed but took motion pictures of their long ordeal.

Feeling a bit cold?
2007: Island Jewels
Much nicer here on Fraser Island off the SE coast of Queensland, the aboriginal name is K'gari which translates as Paradise.

An entry to Sunday Stamps II theme - photography - click to See It On A Postcard    


FinnBadger said...

Thanks for the warm up at the end! And a great selection - I wasn't familiar with the set from 1985.

Bob Scotney said...

I can't believe I forgot about these Shackleton stamps; all first class.

Eva A. said...

Such a wonderful selection! I like especially the stamps where people appear reading and writing (or doing something), rather than mere portraits. It seems to me that those pictures are more interesting, tell a story.

Heleen said...

I love the Peter Sellers stamp, not only by memories of his Pink Panther movies, but also due to the fact he is holding a newspaper which makes it a nice portrait.
The other portraits are beaufiful, too, and the adventures in the cold I think stunning (and indeed, the colourful Australian one warms us up again :-) )

violet s said...

I recognized all the actors, but the photographers were all new to me.