The photo above (apologies for poor quality) is a clipping from Loving Magazine, 1975, and that’s me on the tractor! It was my ‘gap year’ pre University, although it wasn’t called a gap year then. My Mum had carefully saved the clipping and we found it neatly folded with some old birthday cards. Well done, Mum!
I was in a story which ran over two editions, and I got paid £25 which seemed like a lot of money at the time. It came about because I had a friend whose Mum was features editor on the magazine. They used to illustrate the stories with photos and she saw me in my long Laura Ashley frock and asked me if I’d do a photo shoot for them. Having established it was all in ‘good taste’ I happily agreed!
It was strange coming across it again and I can tell you that it wasn’t airbrushed at all. (See the real life sweat patches under my arm for authenticity; it was a very hot day and I had just climbed up onto a tractor.)
I re-read the original story: what was much stranger, was that even in 1975, the girl had a career. OK it was modelling but she was an independent woman and not exactly stick thin, and in charge of her own destiny. In order to get the girl the boy had to accept her career. This was the same era when sexism was rife and beauty pageants were a regular feature on our TV screens. I never realised that Loving Magazine was so ahead of its time but then to be honest, I never actually read it regularly.
Fortunately we don’t have beauty pageants on screen any more (thank you to all those feminist demonstrators), but in many ways, it feels we haven’t moved that far. If that picture went out today I’d be photo shopped so much that I probably wouldn’t recognise my 19 year old self.
PS I’d like to attribute the picture but can’t. It was a photographer for Loving Magazine in 1975, that’s all I know. If you know anything about it, please do get in touch!
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Posted on December 9th, 2014 by Jane