MY FIRST LOVE
It was in my late teens that the fine arts became a passion of mine and, had photography not seduced me away, I would have gone on to study fine art at Michaelis Art School in Cape Town.
The attraction to photography led me to Dirk Schwager’s studio. From day one as his understudy, I was assigned to darkroom duties. After fourteen months in the ‘dark ages’ he finally handed me a Nikon F2, one roll of black-and-white film and ushered me out into the daylight, “Bring back some pictures and, make sure they’re bloody good.”
It’s been 38 years since I went out on my own but it’s in the last few years that my passion for the fine arts re-surfaced. In 2011, I dug out my old SLR cameras, imported film stock, I now leave my digital gear behind and venture out in pursuit of creating and taking pictures; “make sure they’re bloody good” echoing in my mind.
I know that analog photography and Silver-Gelatin handprints are the way forward to liberating that first love.
Off the rails
Gavin, renowned for his long-standing contribution to South Africa’s photographic community, has spent the better part of his career unearthing and salvaging undiscovered bodies of photographic work and championing the preservation of our collective photographic heritage.