The day I photographed the Queen and her dogs in the living room at Balmoral

I was a fledgling photographer, just starting out in London in 1967. The Observer called and asked me if I’d like to shoot the Queen. The thought of it really scared the pants off me, so I said: “I don’t think I can.” I’m not going to tell you what my wife said to me when I told her.

from Pocket
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One Reply to “The day I photographed the Queen and her dogs in the living room at Balmoral”

  1. If you make the mistake of reading the comments on this article, you’ll be reminded that the monarchy is a contentious subject in the UK. Regardless, I love this piece because it does exactly what the Observer wanted to accomplish all those years ago–it humanizes Elizabeth and reminds me of the fun and funny and even brave stories I’ve heard about her over the years.

    Here, she takes the stairs two at a time, which is such a great image–but back during the war she worked as a mechanic and ambulance driver, which is hardly the stuff of a Disney princess, and the story of her driving Crown Prince Abdullah around Scotland, flying down narrow roads and talking the whole time, is epic (and widely suspected to have been a deliberate statement on her part about women not being permitted to drive in Saudi Arabia). She also took great glee in photobombing a tourist’s photo a few years ago. Whatever you think of the monarchy, and whatever impression she may give in public at age 91, there’s no denying that Elizabeth might just be the first badass queen of England, and she’s a fabulous role model.

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