I’ve always enjoyed reading through the pages of National Geographic . Looking at page after page of great photography. Along with Life magazine they were the building blocks upon which my interest in photography was built. Reading stories from far away (and sometimes closer) and of places brought to life in the pages of the magazine. A corner of my desk in my office at home now has a sizable stack of these magazines, collected over the years, climbing a little higher each month.
I sometimes wish I had been introduced to them far earlier as it would have made boring school lessons far more interesting and I would have probably picked up a lot more than I did!
Of course every photographer must, at some point, imagine themselves working for this magazine – taking advantage of the time, the money and the commitment given to each story. Taking your cameras around the globe and photographing many amazing subjects…..of course the reality is very different I’m sure….and the chances of it happening to the vast majority of photographers, pro or otherwise….well, I guess that’s why we all have a big pile of magazines somewhere?
I picked up an old copy of the magazine the other week on ebay – only cost me a few quid. It was the June 1949 edition. It arrived in great condition, complete with the ‘Europe and Near East‘ map and with the original delivery envelope!
Reading through it there was no shortage of interesting stories and as always the photography was inspiring – with one story in particular about fishing in Newfoundland that had some amazing pictures. There is a lot the photographer can learn by looking at the pictures in any great magazine – or website – but, in my humble opinion, National Geographic has to be up there as one of the greatest…..even the advertisements, like the one here at the bottom, whilst dated, lend themselves to photographic inspiration…