Photo Books

It’s that time of year again, when the ‘best of’ photo book lists roll around. In the absence of good book shops, with so few good ones left, we rely on the lists, to edit out the wheat from the chaff. We look to them for their recommendations and for some inspiration.

So far I have seen, PDN’s Indie Photo Books of the Year Part 1 and Alec Soth’s Little Brown Mushroom Top 10. Christina De Middel’s self published book, The Afronaughts features on both these lists. It was announced last week that this book has gained her a nomination for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize alongside Adam Bromberg and Oliver Chanarin, Miska Henner and Chris Killip. It’s the only book featured on both lists and I’m sure will be included in many more. This really goes to show the power of the photo book. That a self published first book can achieve a nomination like this. The photo book is the perfect vehicle to elevate an unknown photographer to the status of successful artist in one amazing book.

I was lucky enough to see a copy of The Afronaughts in the flesh last week. It is an incredibly beautifully made book. Christina’s images are humorous and beautiful at the same time. I saw the book at the newly launched Photo Book Labs in Bristol. It’s a new group set up along the lines of The Photo Book Club. It’s been set up by Instant Coffees Photography Platforms for anyone who enjoys looking at, and sharing photo books. It got off to a good start last week, by taking a closer look at Walker Evans, American Photographs. Each of us shared one of our own, favourite photo books. There was a great selection and variety of books, including a couple of jems that I hadn’t come across before.

Thanks to Kathleen, Beth and Jamie for this photo above.
Special thanks to my Mum for the photo below.

  1. Nice use of your pictures here Kirsty. Great shot of your mum!
    What book did you share at the Photo Book Lab..?

    • Thanks Wendy. They are from a few years back, but think I can use he one above in my pink project. It will be a surprise for my mum when she reads my blog! I shared Gomorrah Girl by Valerio Spada.

      • Excellent choice!

      • What about this picture of your mum for the TW..?

      • I like the picture, but I don’t think of it as a portrait & I think they are after formal portraits. I’ll come up with something for TW tho..

  2. I tried to find a copy of Afronauts somewhere but it was an impossible mission. Sold out!
    Any advice on where to find one?
    Un abrazo

    • Sorry Diego, it is totally sold out. Maybe she’ll do a second edition. They would definitely sell on account of the Photo Prize nomination. Have you seen the book on Vimeo?

  3. Love that pic of your mum Kirsty.

    How are things? Did you do your ED workshop again? I’m still in Lawrence Weston at Gateway, hard work. Rewarding occasionally.


    • Hi Penny,

      Thanks, it’s a funny picture. Yes, I did another Electric December. There was only a very small group this year, which was really nice for me. They were also a really excellent bunch.

      Hope you are well, and the occasions increase.

      Kirsty x

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