If you can resist a photoshoot in which two bikers who belong to the 59 Club whip their denim off and get cosy in and around London’s iconic biker spot Ace Café, then you’re a stronger person than I am. I came across this masterpiece by photographer Bex Day yesterday afternoon, and it’s so charged with hairy, sunny, smiley biker love that I’m tempted to print images out and stick them around to remind myself how great life is.
The making of the shoot, from the casting to the location, was an exercise in authenticity, Bex explains. “I first became interested in bikers after researching the 59 Club,” a British motorcycle club which started in Hackney, London in 1959. “I wanted to document the renowned Ace Café and the lives of the bikers who hang out there and get to know them better, but most importantly to investigate their take on the movement of the 50s and 60s.
“I cast the main subjects, Dean, Mick and Jake beforehand to make sure they’d be comfortable with me shooting them semi-nude, in more avant-garde poses.” Her choice of subjects was key, she continued. “Photographers focus too much on conventional beauty and what ‘model agencies’ consider aesthetically pleasing. I wanted to break these barriers by showing alternative subjects in a positive light, in a way that they feel comfortable in front of the camera.”
There’s no questioning that they feel comfortable, they look like they’re having the time of their lives, furry and bare and exposed to the elements in a way that makes London look like the west coast of the USA. What’s not to love?
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