User:Gerry Cranham

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Gerry Cranham
Born February 1, 1929
Farnborough Hampshire

Gerry Cranham (born 1929) is regarded as one of the finest sports photographers of his generation.


Early career[edit]

Cranham served as an apprentice in the aircraft industry before spending five years in the regular Army. He went on to work as an engineering draftsman. As a young man his tall and sporting physique led him towards athletics and he was fine middle-distance runner, winning the Southern Junior half-mile (1945) and finishing second in the Junior AAA half-mile (1946). His interest in sports helped to shape an eventual career within it as a photographer and his first photograph was published in London, 1957.

A Pioneer of British Sports Photography[edit]

Through the 1960s and 1970s, Cranham was at the forefront of a new wave of sports photographers in this country, his pictures were seen in a host of renowned national and international titles including The Observer, Sunday Times , Sports Illustrated, the Evening Standard, Daily Mail, Athletics Weekly, Time Life Inc and South London Press.

A broader appeal[edit]

In the 1970s and 1980s, he undertook advertising commissions for clients such as Shell, Midland Bank, Dunlop, Harp Larger and St. Ivel. By this stage his love affair with sports, majored mainly on horseracing and for the last 30 years, his camera has been pointed at many of the world’s greatest thoroughbreds.


Gerry Cranham has been recognised as among the very best British sports photographers of his generation. Blessed with flair, dynamism and determinism in equal measures, he captured a series of stunning photographs over half of a century from the late 1950s onwards.


1964 The Professionals with text by Geoffrey Nicholson Andre Deutsch London
1977 100 years of Wimbledon Guinness London
1979 TThe Guinness Guide to Steeple Chasing, with text by Richard Pitman & John Oaksey London 1979
1979 Gary Player on Fitness and Success, text by Norman Harris World Work Ltd
1980 Trevor Francis, with text by Rob Hughes Kingswood, Surrey
1983 The World Of Flat Racing, text by Brough Scott Kingswood, Surrey
1988 The Guinness Book of Steeple chasing, text by Richard Pitman London
1990 The Guinness Book of Flat Racing, text by Christopher Poole London
1992 The Guinness Book of Great Jockeys of The Flat, text by Michael Tanner London

Exhibitions & Collections[edit]

Individual Exhibitions 1962, Kodak Gallery, London. 1971, ‘Sports Photographs by Gerry Cranham’, Victoria & Albert Museum, London.

Selected Group Exhibitions 1964 Motor Racing, Kodak Gallery, London. 1968 Man In Sport, Baltimore Museum of Art. 1973 A Matter of Style, The Photographers Gallery, London.

Collections Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Baltimore Museum of Art.

Further reading[edit]

  • Sports Photographs by Gerry Cranham, exhibition catalogue, by Geoffrey Nicholson & George Hughes, London 1971
  • The Magic Image by Cecil Beaton and Gail Buckland, London & Boston, 1975
  • Exploring Photography by Bryn Campbell, London 1978
  • “Gerry Cranham” in British Journal of Photography (London), 1963 (issue Feb 15)
  • “British Press Picture of the Year” in British Journal of Photography (London), 1967 (issue Dec 22)