Review: I’ve Lived in East London for 86 1/2 Years

I first heard about Hoxton Mini Press thanks to Douggie Wallace’s series “shorditch wild life” which they published as one of the books in their East London series. The book caught my attention thanks to its beautiful layout and the option of buying a “collectors edition” which included a print along with a copy of the book in a more protective section. This seemed like a really clever idea to me, a standard book and then a premium collectors edition.

I next heard about Hoxton Mini Press was at the first street photography symposium in London 2016. Martin Usborn came to talk about getting a photo book published as well as his own book, the book which lead to the founding of Hoxton Mini Press “I’ve lived in East London for 86 1/2 years”. I picked up a copy and so, a year later. Here is my review.

About the photos

“I’ve lived in East London for 86 1/2 years” follows Joseph Markovitch, a resident of East London for his whole life. He had seen the area go through great changes from its working class background with traditional tailors, furniture makers and factories into the trendy hipsterville than is now present.

The book contains stand alone images of Jospeh in his local environment as well as photos with accompanying quotes from Jospeh on various topics which include

  • Reading
  • Technology
  • Relationships
  • Religion
  • Homosexuality
  • The cinema
  • Money

And more. His quotes show insights into his past, his life and how he views the world now.

About the book

The book is made from high quality material and pages with a cloth bound side. This is common across Hoxton Mini Press books which provide interesting topics, great quality books but at a fraction of the cost that most other photobooks cost. They are the size of a (roughly) A5 size book, or standard paperback. This makes them great for a bookshelf. Admittedly, these portrait layouts and smaller size than some photobooks has its own limits. Landscape images across pages have a divide down the middle or they are squashed into a single page limiting the details. It would be interesting to see Hoxton publish a landscape book in the future if it focused on Landscape images. Never the less, the quality is better than many more expensive books out there.

More photo book reviews to come

This is something that I’m hoping to do more of if people are interested. I would be really grateful if you left a comment with feedback on your interest and also critiques of the review. It would really help me a lot.

Originally published at Chris J Wilson.

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