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Matinee: 'My Life in Photography: Charles Kelly' Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

18 June 2016

Saturday matinees long ago let us escape from the ordinary world to the island of the Swiss Family Robinson or the mutinous decks of the Bounty. Why not, we thought, escape the usual fare here with Saturday matinees of our favorite photography films?

So we're pleased to present the 140th in our series of Saturday matinees today: My Life in Photography: Charles E Kelly.

In this 25-minute chat with Atlanta photographer Charles Kelly, who passed away earlier this month, John Stephen Richard Hyjek pairs Kelly's stories with his photos. Kelly, who wrote his own captions, remembers each occasion concisely and with no little humor.

There are a lot of occasions to remember from his 33 year career with the Associated Press in the Memphis, Milwaukee and Atlanta bureaus where he covered everything from celebrity sightings to sports to the Civil Rights Movement. But the 25 minutes go by in a blur.

One reason is the humor. Another is the challenge each situation presented. And it doesn't hurt that these images capture some important people.

Just to give you one example, Kelly was on the scene when former President Jimmy Carter tripped over a vine during a morning jog and fell to the pavement just beyond a police barricade. Kelly got the shot. He remembered Saturday Night Live suggested Carter was trying to sneak back into the White House under the barricade.

We won't spoil the fun you'll have listening to Kelly any further but we will suggest you keep an ear out for his asides on how he managed to make a few unique captures. Like mounting a Leica to a pole vaulter's pole and running alongside him because he only had a six-foot cable release.

"A legend among wire service photographers," we noted in his obituary, "Kelly was also remembered as a southern gentleman who 'just plain beat the competition.'"

And in this video remembered every detail.

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