‘Linda McCartney - Life in Photographs’ is a remarkable tribute to a photographer, who was first, and foremost a life partner and mother.
Linda passed away at the age of 56 in 1998, succumbing to cancer, leaving behind a treasure trove of extraordinary images.
Prefacing the book are commentaries by her former husband, Paul McCartney, and two of their daughters Stella and Mary. Another renowned photographer, Annie Leibovitz also shares some thoughts.
Throughout the book is a collection of photographs of some famous subjects like Jim Morrison, Mick Jagger, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and the Beatles. Mostly musicians because Linda loved music, and the musicians.
Despite their extraordinary lives, Linda had a way of capturing their moments of insecurity. There is one photograph of Twiggy someplace in London in 1969. She’s sitting alone, pensively, gazing downward that is especially captivating. It’s not the usual model shot, not a pose, but a natural look.
In interviews with family and friends, many remarked how Linda had a gift for capturing her subjects when they were vulnerable and in the moment, rather than being contrived, putting on a face for the camera. It was as if Linda wasn’t even there. She made everyone feel comfortable around her.
Amongst the collection are also a number of intimate family photographs, including one with Paul balancing himself on a fence on a farm in Scotland, wearing his night robe, while son James and daughter Stella were playing around, with the family dog in the distance. A typical family photo, it seems.
And some photographs demonstrate Linda’s sense of humor. A stack of empty coffee cups in a studio in London, and one with a bottle of Whisky and baby milk, side by side.
The e-book edition is made for Apple’s iBook for iPad, and includes a video interview with Paul McCartney, Stella and Mary. It’s a pleasure to scroll through the photographs interactively, rotating and zooming in, and reading the captions.
It’s also an inspiration for those who have, or want to take up photography. A gem.