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Bric-a-Brac: F is for...

Flash cubes

No, that one's used, sling it...Photography has been devalued. With digital cameras, it’s just too bloody easy to fire off a hundred shots of Alan and the boys ‘out on the razz’ and upload them onto Flickr the same night for the entire world to ignore. Not so long ago, you only had 36, or even 24 chances to preserve your companions’ merry antics for the ages, so a bit of thought was called for. If you were indoors things were even more fraught. ‘Denise, how many flashes are left on this?’ Yep, your housebound David Bailey could only do his thing if there was a sufficient supply of silvery plastic boxes full of wire wool to plug in the top of the camera, all the better to illuminate the alluring tableau of Auntie Jean’s paper crown slipping over her left eye with a veil of flat blue dazzle. The cube rotated four times to present a fresh bulb to the carousing throng, and then that was it, new cube please. Ooh, what a palaver! Small wonder everyone in photos from 1978 looks so damn fed up.



  1. Matt Patton

    November 14, 2009 at 1:59 am

    So YOU are the people who stole my first camera. Return it at once or I will force you to look at the entire first role of pictures I shot (horses–well, horses cut in half because the camera was in the wrong place . . .)

  2. Mark

    January 10, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    That post was seriously funny, and absolutely took me back instantly to my dad saying the same thing in around 1978, can still smell the Old Spice as he got ready to go out

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