Photographs of Mods and ScootersTuesday June 09, 2015
The Mods are Back in Town
One thing that I feel is missing from today's youth scene is an identity. As I was growing up in the late 70s early 80s, there was a plethora of trends and styles driven by dynamic and charismatic bands like The Jam, The Specials, The Sex Pistols, Motorhead and many many more. You could choose an identity and then dress to suit.
I was first drawn to Ska and bands like The Specials, Madness and The Beat, but bubbling underneath my black and white chequered skin was a love for Mod music and the Mod culture.
Mods had a pretty tough time of it when I was a teenager. There were a couple of lads who lived near us and they seemed to get abused by Rude Boys, Rockers and Punks. But they were the kiddies. I loved the stylish way they dressed, the wonderful scooters and the music.
Undoubtedly, I had been influenced by The Who's incredible album Quadrophenia. My uncle had a copy of the original album, which I copied onto tape and listened to on my huge headphones. The angst and the pain of Jimmy against the background of a youth rebellion was so exciting. I wanted to be Jimmy. When I saw the film, I fell in love with the album and Mod culture all over again.
On Sunday, I was sitting in McDonalds in Culverhouse Cross in Cardiff with my wife on a break from photographing a wonderful wedding in Ely. We had an hour and half to kill before the reception and so it was time just to have a breather. Then I saw them walk in. The green fish tailed coats, sparkling clean and shiny Dr Marten boots and hair styles that Paul Weller would have been proud of. They were all around my age or older and inside I felt a sense of belonging. I wanted to be those guys.
Outside, as I prepared to return to my wedding photoshoot, I almost jumped in the car and drove away, but the draw was too much.
"Would you mind if I photographed you and your scooters?" I asked. "No problem," they replied.
Unfortunately, I didn't have much time and so only took a few shots, first with my standard lens and then with my wide angled lens just to get a slightly different perspective. The scooters looked amazing, as did the Mods, and I just wish that I had a little more time to spend with them. Thanks lads.
I love taking photographs of Urban Culture and all the photographs on the website can be either purchased as downloads or prints. Also, if there is a specific project that you wish to discuss, please get in touch.
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