I took this portrait of John Le Carré in 1978, I was working for the Observer newspaper in London at the time. It was a memorable assignment, I had just started working for the paper and this portrait was to lead the Features Section.
It was an assignment normally given to the extraordinary photographer Jane Bown. Jane had been working for the paper for at least 30 years by the time I got there. I was in awe of Jane. So was terrified of blowing the opportunity.
Mr. Le Carré was charming but very silent. I had half and hour of his time and so only managed two locations the image above is in his favourite chair I also photographed him in his writing room. That room is in the attic of the house ... a large gothic looking number on Hamstead Heath... and was blacked out with only a lamp on the table, so as not to be distracted .. he told me.
The portrait ran half page of the paper's Features section.
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