The stories behind the pictures - Images and anecdotes that give a tantalising glimpse of the danger and glamour, tragedy and celebrity, seen through the lens of a talented photographer for whom every day was different and every frame counted.
Stephen Markeson, who spent 35 years working for national newspapers, has written an intriguing photographic diary documenting images and the stories behind them from the golden era of Fleet Street, when budgets were limitless, deadlines were tight and getting the film from the camera to the darkroom was a challenge in itself. His determination saw him rise from messenger boy at The Times to the top of his profession as senior staff photojournalist for that paper, and his resourcefulness is apparent in many of the notes that accompany his iconic photographs.
His life was far from ordinary, with experiences ranging from being shadowed by the KGB and threatened by the IRA to hoodwinking Maggie Thatcher and dancing with Elton John.
The book will appeal to anyone with an interest in recent history, journalism or photography and particularly in the drama and atmosphere of images shot on black and white film.
“The career of a Fleet Street photographer can be made or stalled in an instant...the millisecond it takes for the camera shutter to capture an iconic image that speaks a thousand words or just yet another frame destined to be discarded on the darkroom floor.
Stephen allows the photographs to speak for themselves but brilliantly lets us in on some of the circumstances, opportunities and fortune that framed the story behind the story. For most of my Fleet Street life, pictures could only be printed in black and white and there is something more compelling, artistic and engaging in monochrome. And boy did this book bring back memories.”
Charles Wilson, Editor of The Times 1985-1990
“Stephen Markeson is, undoubtedly, one of the legendary photographers of the golden era of Fleet Street and his lens a witness to the making of history.”
Ron Morgans, Picture editor
Daily Express 1967-73. Today 1985-93. Daily Mirror 1993-2000
Published in 2021 by ArtCircus Books, an imprint of YouCaxton Publications
Available in bookshops, on Amazon, and via: https://www.youcaxton.co.uk/fleet-street-exposures/
Having left the often turbulent life of photo-journalism, which took him around the world, Stephen now lives in the Cotswolds. “An idyllic location, serene and beautiful with little to offend the eye, yet within easy reach of the adrenalin of London and the world beyond.”