Vintage F1 Photography Books Have Been Added To The Petrolicious Shop
Formula 1 is rife with cliches about the past, about how motorsport used to be more compelling, more exciting, and just plain “better” when the cars more prone to exploding into shrapnel and the sex was safer (if anyone can explain what this really means besides a weak synonym for “free love,” please let us know). Even in its heavily-meted and cordoned-off atmosphere today, grand prix racing has remained the quintessential entry point for a car enthusiast with an interest in competition, and why wouldn’t it be? These are after all the most technologically intriguing machines on wheels outside of rovers meant to crawl around on other planets. Because of the sport’s immense and sustained post-war popularity, it can often feel like there’s nothing new to be said, nothing new to be seen. But despite the degree of documentation that exists and the amount of people parroting it between each other, there are still certain storytellers (in addition to the stories themselves) that can cut through the noise and deliver something authentic and inspired rather than another repackaging of old news.
We’ve added two new coffee-table-quality books to the Petrolicious Shop that we feel fit that description. Richard Kelley and Rainer W. Schlegelmilch have some of the deepest and most impressive portfolios of any automotive photojournalist of any era, and with these two books their bodies of work in Formula 1 are carefully consolidated into these definitive volumes.
The Golden Age of Formula 1 (Rainer W. Schlegelmilch) [LINK]
All the big names are here, captured in the cockpit, in the paddocks, in their elements: Jim Clark, Jacky Ickx, Jack Brabham—just to name a few. With Schlegelmilch’s compelling photographs, this exceptional volume is a way to relive—or discover—a bygone period of F1 racing. A wonderfully competitive and charismatic group of drivers are featured in the collection of photographs, as well as their supporting casts in the pits. Rainer W. Schlegelmilch has been a motor sports photographer since 1962.
The Golden Age of Formula 1 is a kaleidoscope of the sport. Schlegelmilch depicts the competition itself, but the candids, portraits, and more intimate looks at the human elements are what defines this collection. If something as vague as atmosphere and mood can be conveyed in a still photograph, there is plenty of supporting evidence in here. It’s one thing to have an all-access ticket to get behind the scenes, but here there’s the extra element of having these views filtered through the lens of someone who really knows how to tell a story without words.
Waiting (Richard Kelley) [LINK]
Waiting is the story of a rookie photojournalist immersed in Formula 1’s most radical decades: the 1970s and 1980s.
Aged just 19, Richard Kelley saw the need to faithfully document the sport’s lethal dangers, iconic personalities, and technological developments in a period of seismic change, which caused F1’s unique character to disappear forever. After only nine months of photographic education, Kelley began using his remarkable talent to observe and capture F1 drivers’ decisive moments. He sought his images as a fly on the wall, consciously disappearing among this band of brothers to allow the emotion and power of the moment to blend, developing a cinematic style that grows more contemporary every year.
Waiting is a powerful and unique documentary of the world of F1 from 1972 through to 1984. From Gilles Villeneuve’s first moments with Ferrari to Francois Cevert’s final morning and Niki Lauda’s resurrection, Kelley’s omnipresent lens and enlightening memoir capture an intimacy and humanity that Grand Prix history will never again witness.