Hilton Hamann Fine Photography

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Hilton Hamann Fine Photography

For 30 years Hilton Hamann, known as "Bighilt" to his mates, wrote books and worked as a photojournalist for newspapers and magazines all over the world. He photographed politicians, sports-people, guerillas, rioters, army generals, entertainers and businessmen. His work appeared in publications in more than 55 countries including Sunday Times, Sunday Star, Fairlady, International Defence Review, Soldier of Fortune, Penthouse, Readers Digest and many more.

Over the years he became acutely aware of how rapidly the world changes and how personal and family history is simply fading into dim memories or disappearing competely.

"But it is the images and stories of the ordinary man and woman that are most interesting. They are your vital legacy that must be kept for future generations because that is all that will tell your story in years to come," he says.

"Your lifestyle, environment, milestones, relationships, family and friends are patches in the quilt of who you are. It is your history and life and it is important."

It was this philosophy that inspired Bighilt to change his focus, move away from the formal media machine and concentrate on documenting family histories, working with couples and families throughout South Africa.

His images have a unique, magical look because they are shot primarily on medium format or 35mm film, using using vintage cameras that possess some of the finest lenses ever made.

"I am by no means against digital cameras," he says, "I use them on occasion but there is something unique and magical about the glow of film and its ability to capture detail that is lost in a digital image.

"In addition, black and white negatives and images, when properly stored, will last hundreds of years -- something you'll appreciate when you celebrate your Golden Wedding Anniversary and want to print copies of your wedding photographs for your grand children!"

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