Innovative psychedelic album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, released 50 years ago today in the UK by The Pink Floyd. Photograph by Vic Singh.
“The band was psychedelic and their music was surreal and alien compared to other popular music of the time, so it needed a far-out image. Having to work with a small production budget, I decided to use a prism lens which George Harrison had given me because he could not find a use for it and I had not used it up till then, so it seemed like the perfect solution. All I had to do was screw it on my Hasselblad camera lens and the creative special effect would go straight on to the film … I also asked the band to bring colorful psychedelic clothes which would stand out and provide us with more contrast as the prism lens tended to soften and loose contrast as it split the image. I don’t know how long it took the band to get the clothes together, but they arrived at the studio in the morning, put the coffee pot on, and sat around the studio chatting. Finally, we decided to get on with the photos and the boys went to the changing room and started trying on the clothes. I first started with some test Polaroid shots, positioning them on the white background, which was a bit tricky as the prism lens multiplied each figure – they all overlapped each other! – so I had to get the figures positioned right or the whole thing looked like a mess. Syd got especially interested at this point and was quite intense, changing outfits and the positions of the band on the background and shooting tests on the Polaroid film with me …
They loved the photos and Syd got inspired to create the back of the album cover. It had been a beautiful day – as had the day before the shoot and the day after – I attribute it to Flower Power!” - Vic Singh
Swinging London 1967,
complete series of photos of the magazine “Paris Match” on the psychedelic fashion in London. October 1967. Jane Birkin appears in two photos. Photos by Philippe Le Tellier (Paris Match)