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Regulars / Bookshelf

Photographer Lydia Garnett’s Bookshelf includes a photo album and a guide to 80s cocktails

We’ve featured Lydia Garnett’s fantastic photography several times on the site, most recently her “school’s out” shoot for Brutus. The London-based photographer has a knack for capturing beautifully honest portraits and situations, so it’s no surprise she’s created work for big clients including Adidas, Dazed and Confused, Diesel, Tate Britain and The New York Times.

When she’s not busy making the everyday compelling, Lydia is also editor of the online quarterly Accent Magazine with Lucy Nurberg. Each issue features ten great stories from around the world put together by a crack team of writers, photographers and filmmakers. Keen to find out more about Lydia’s story, we asked her to share the books the that have inspired her as a photographer. From the personal to the gritty, Lydia’s bookshelf is wonderfully eclectic.

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Michael Walker: The Cinzano Cocktail Book

Michael Walker: The Cinzano Cocktail Book

This book is on long-term loan from my pal Lizzie King who, like this book, brings so much colour and joy to my life! I love the design, the pre-Photoshop photography skills and the 80s party decor. 

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Eve Fowler: Hustlers

Eve Fowler: Hustlers

Eve Fowler’s Hustlers is one of my favourite documentary portrait books. It’s an incredibly beautiful portrait of male hustlers in 90s America, from the West Coast to the West Village. Full of hazy gazes and California light, Hustlers pulls you in and shares an insight into a certain way of life. I also love the DIY way it’s been put together with photocopied front and back pages. 

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Nan Goldin: The Ballad of Sexual Dependency

Nan Goldin: The Ballad of Sexual Dependency

Nan Goldin was one of the first photographers I learned about in school and her work opened my mind to a whole other way of shooting. Since then, she’s always been an icon of mine. I remember always wanting to own a copy of this book and after I graduated from a photography degree I treated myself to a copy from Aperture in New York. 

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Mum and Dad: Wedding Album

Mum and Dad: Wedding Album

When I was younger, my mum would be the one to take photos of family moments and collect printed photos in albums. I love looking back at the grainy 35mm snapshots and I’m thankful that my mum archived photos and always had her camera to hand. 

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Irvine Welsh: Trainspotting

Irvine Welsh: Trainspotting

This book is brilliant. Honest, gritty and pretty grim in parts – it goes without saying that this cover image of Ewan is an all-time classic. 

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Lydia Garnett’s Bookshelf