Classified Advert for Drape coat suit, 1970’s. ©Ted Polhemus/PYMCA

Classified Advert for Drape coat suit, 1970’s. ©Ted Polhemus/PYMCA

Snapshot surveillance by photographer and writer, Hartnett.

DRESSING-UP GAMES

Yet another Vintage event on the horizon.

Ready for a cupcake, darling?

Vintage Glasgow
Merchant City Festival 
26th & 27th July, 2014

vintagefestival.co.uk

Seeking a day of Tweed Run types and barely legal boys in uniforms? Girls who just wanna have fun, as they jive to vinyl, the way their grans once did?

Perhaps it’s high time for an assessment and evaluation of all things retro, as quite a song and dance has been made over revival events in recent years. Has the so-called trend well ‘n’ truly peaked? Are such herding events relevant, or just a corporate / municipal cash-in? You know, under the umbrella of regeneration ‘n’ all that.

A crackly telephone line. West Yorkshire to West London. Wayne Hemingway, designer and founder of The Vintage Festival, picks up.

A question is popped. ‘What can young people learn from all things vintage?’

'Vintage is about individuality, sustainability, design that lasts. Vintage reflects an appreciation of work that is classic, not temporary. Young people can learn so much from retro, styles that've stood the test of time.

Retro-themed events all too often reflect a hall of mirrors cutsie-wootsie nightmare. Decades of Style Heritage, reduced to mere ‘revival’ fancy-dress amateur theatrics panto for those wishing to return to the dainty days of BuntyTwinkleand bleedin’ Dandy

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PYMCA Photographer Marc Vallée presents a guest talk ‘My Favourite Photograph’ on an image by ©Larry Clark at The Photographers’ Gallery tomorrow at 1pm!

PYMCA Photographer Marc Vallée presents a guest talk ‘My Favourite Photograph’ on an image by ©Larry Clark at The Photographers’ Gallery tomorrow at 1pm!

THE WHO: Northern Soul FansTHE WHEN: 1990sTHE WHERE: UK

©Jonas Unger/PYMCA

THE WHO: Northern Soul Fans
THE WHEN: 1990s
THE WHERE: UK

©Jonas Unger/PYMCA

THE WHO: A Young Rocker THE WHEN: 1978THE WHERE: London

©Philip Grey/PYMCA

THE WHO: A Young Rocker 
THE WHEN: 1978
THE WHERE: London

©Philip Grey/PYMCA

PYMCA Photographer duo Dosfotos continued their festival pilgrimage this year by heading to document the colourful goings on at Field Day in Victoria Park. Their photographs show a festival symbiotic with freedom of self expression and a strong collective euphoria. Field Day 2014 was impressively headlined by Pixies & Metronomy. www.fielddayfestivals.com

THE WHO: Two girls dance togetherTHE WHEN: 1978THE WHERE: London
©Philip Grey/PYMCA

THE WHO: Two girls dance together
THE WHEN: 1978
THE WHERE: London

©Philip Grey/PYMCA

Photographer Molly Macindoe presents her exclusive monthly column with a spark of feminine attitude.

To pre-order a copy of the 2nd edition reprint of ‘Out of Order’ click here for the KICKSTARTER project only a few hours remaining!

FREE PARTY BEAUTY

I’ve been photographing the free party and teknival scene since 1997 and it has remained my favourite subject matter since, in particular the individual faces of the culture’s community.  My photography book ‘Out of Order: A Photographic Celebration of the Free Party Scene’  is a collection of 10 years of this work and is currently up for crowd funding for a reprint.

The front cover image is of a strikingly beautiful young woman, wearing work overalls, a pierced lip and her head mostly shaven with two spikes of hair — my best friend at school who took me to my first rave, and one of countless examples of unconventional female beauty to be found in this community. 

On one occasion in 1999, I went to a rave straight from working late and one of my colleagues chose to come with me after hearing so much about these squat parties.  He was an average Joe— liked a pint of Fosters down the pub and the occasional club night—yet he had a mind curious and open enough to genuinely want to experience London indoor parties. They can be very intimidating at first view and ‘Joe’ was wide eyed but not put off; instead he asked questions about everything he saw around him.  

One of his innocent observations has always stuck with me; we’d been sitting for a while in the corner of a room, people-watching as I explained what I could about the workings of the scene.  During that time a few female friends had stopped to say hello.  Afterwards, ‘Joe’ turned and whispered that he’d never in his life seen so many truly beautiful women.  A bit surprised, I asked him to elaborate. He explained that it was a startling, natural beauty he saw in the girls and women that evening, with dreadlocks, shaved heads, mohawks, normal hair in long and short cuts, with heavy makeup and without, with piercings, tattoos, and dressed in so many varying styles from the subcultural melting pot that is the free party scene.

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THE WHO: A punk with a Soo Catwoman tattoo on her shoulder.THE WHEN: 1980THE WHERE: UK
©Ted Polhemus/PYMCA

THE WHO: A punk with a Soo Catwoman tattoo on her shoulder.
THE WHEN: 1980
THE WHERE: UK

©Ted Polhemus/PYMCA

THE WHO: Woman stroking a pigeon from the inside of a shedTHE WHEN: 1990sTHE WHERE: Unknown
©Matthew Smith/PYMCA

THE WHO: Woman stroking a pigeon from the inside of a shed
THE WHEN: 1990s
THE WHERE: Unknown

©Matthew Smith/PYMCA

Snapshot surveillance by photographer and writer, Hartnett.

POWER FACE

What has always intrigued me, are the motivations to dress up, the resourcefulness and the often desperate need to be seen as an individual. 

Almost indefinable, invariably intangible, style is a magic formula that thrills and delights us. 

I’m drawn to faces, made-up faces. I have to admit, however, that in the main I’m drawn to documenting subjects with sheep-like mentality so much of the time. The way I see the world can be cruel.

I’m lured by faces, particularly faces that’ve been transformed by make-up. I’m drawn by the masks so many leave the house wearing and mesmerised by women who choose to make-up on London Underground. Down goes my book or copy of Metro, to watch the application of foundation, powder, lippy, mascara. 

Sometimes, what I observe is a natural enhancement, sometimes a transformation, ready to play the role(s) of the day. A form of facial concealment that secures confidence? 

Whilst minimal, natural make-up is a form of Photoshopping life, it’s when make-up transforms beyond recognition that interests me. 

Beyond mere exterior, it’s the internal make-up of the wearer that is of primary interest… the mental constitution, a subject’s psychological aspect that I wish to consider in this process. The need to often conceal one face, portray another.

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THE WHO: Female RockerTHE WHEN: 1978THE WHERE: Rock on Records, Camden, London

THE WHO: Female Rocker
THE WHEN: 1978
THE WHERE: Rock on Records, Camden, London

THE WHO: Girls shake their booties.THE WHEN: 2004.THE WHERE: Notting Hill Carnival.
©Giles Moberly/PYMCA

THE WHO: Girls shake their booties.
THE WHEN: 2004.
THE WHERE: Notting Hill Carnival.

©Giles Moberly/PYMCA

THE WHO: Debbie Harry/BlondieTHE WHEN: 1977THE WHERE: The Roundhouse, Chalk Farm, London, UK.
©Philip Grey/PYMCA

THE WHO: Debbie Harry/Blondie
THE WHEN: 1977
THE WHERE: The Roundhouse, Chalk Farm, London, UK.

©Philip Grey/PYMCA