Guitar heroes as you’ve never seen them before
Scarlet Page shares the stories behind her new photo book, Resonators
Photographer Scarlet Page has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the release of her new book, Resonators.
Over the past two years, she’s photographed the biggest rock stars in the world, including Brian May, Slash, Paul Stanley and her father, Jimmy.
Scarlet started the project as a way to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust and launched an exhibition of 30 signed prints at the Royal Albert Hall in March last year.
The shots – which also features intimate portraits of Joe Walsh, Mark Knopfler, Peter Green, Chrissie Hynde, Jeff Beck, Noel Gallagher, Johnny Marr and many more – will now be featured in a lavish book which she plans to release in November.
We handpicked a selection of images from the collection and asked Scarlet to share the memories they hold for her – and what it was like to work with her dad...
"I had hoped to shoot Jack when I was in LA, but he was in Nashville at the time and we just didn’t have the funds to get there. But then I found out he was coming to the UK to play at Glastonbury and to do a few other dates, so I immediately made a few phone calls. The Resonators idea had already been suggested to him and he had expressed interest in it, so suddenly, it's happening. We arranged to meet at the soundcheck of his show at Hammersmith Apollo. I set up this one person baby blue backdrop that I’d never used before and it turned out that almost all the press photos he'd done recently had a blue backdrop, too. We did some shots on the back stairwell outside of the Apollo and it took me back a decade or more to when I shot the White Stripes in a similar set-up outside a venue in Manchester."
“John’s house is in the Hollywood hills. It turned out that he no longer lives there, but instead uses it as a work studio after all his equipment and records took over the place. He obviously smokes a lot of cigarettes because the place has that old-fashioned studio smell: stale but somehow creative. As well as his guitars scattered about the place, John had this huge synthesiser that is eight feet by five feet, with tonnes of patch leads running everywhere. He’s like an old-fashioned mad professor. John also has a lot of Captain Beefheart paintings. They are pretty dark but John looks really happy throughout – apart from this particular one shot where it looks like I am stealing his soul..."
**"I first tracked down Steve Jones after being given an email address for him. I wrote him some long emails explaining what Resonators was all about, why I would like him in there and asked if he was available. I received a one-word reply: “Yes.” When I ran some dates by him to let him know when I’m going to be in LA and try to organise things, I asked him where he'd be. He sent another message: 'I’ll tell you when you get ‘ere’, which isn’t too helpful, but exactly what you would hope from a Sex Pistol really. Parked down the road, we saw Steve drive past us on his motorbike back to his house. He lives in a nice Hollywood bungalow – or maybe ‘man cave’ is a better description. There’s a pool outside with leaves floating in it, and old motorbike fuel tanks, helmets and memorabilia lying around the house. It’s definitely a bachelor pad. He pulled on this customised Evel Knievel jacket, with an ‘S’ and a ‘J’ on the cuffs and we did some shots outside then returned to his house where the inside of his front door is painted with a Union flag."
**"In March 2013, I set off from the wrong side of Reading at just after 8am and arrived near Canvey Island at 10:30. Although bright little flecks of snow are threatening a downfall, the Gods are on my side; the M25 has never seemed so smooth. The view of the oil refineries and the marshes fill me with excitement. I had just watched Oil City Confidential so have a new found love and appreciation for Canvey Island – it’s surreal landscape and sense of detachment. After arriving at Wilko’s house, I recognise his castle from the roof detail. He had popped out to the cash-point and his friend Lisa lets me in and offers me a coffee. He had only recently been diagnosed with cancer, but Wilko looked well. I set up a black velvet mini backdrop and let him sit down in front of it with his Telecaster. Using available light I began to capture one of the most photogenic faces I have come across. He joked about the shot making him look like Val Doonican."
**"I feel I need to prove myself and I didn’t want the project to be defined by shots of ‘Jimmy Page’, so Ieft Dad towards the end of the project. I got a lot of the other shoots under my belt before tackling the daunting task of capturing a ‘nice’ portrait of Dad. The first time I shot my Dad professionally was only a couple of years ago, for The Sunday Times magazine. It was nerve-wracking. In some ways, it was harder than working with other artists, if only because I wanted to make him look the very best he can. Everyone has a ‘photo face’ and I often see him looking quite hard, which is possibly how he wants to be seen – but not how I see him. Yet at the same time you don’t want him to look like he’s posing for a family Christmas card photo. So once the project was conceived, I knew he had to be in there – but I still delayed shooting him until right near the end."
For more information and to contribute to the Resonators campaign, visit Kickstarter.