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TheMetal of Kettle By Monica Chard, Editor

One of Sunbury’s treasures, to my mind, is Vic Kettle. If you have not met him, you may have seen him, complete with signature shock of white hair, always armed with his camera, usually at events of significance in Sunbury, and often at the music nights at the Sunbury Cricket Club, where he com- bines his two great passions; photography and mu- sic. You will have seen his work in Sunbury Mat- ters too, where he kindly shares some of his work. I first met Vic at his exhibition at the Riverside Arts Centre in 2011 where the theme was Sunbury and Venice; two waterside gems. Perhaps Sunbury is not quite in the same league, but the photos Vic has taken of our lovely village really bring out the best of it. As well as bring- ing out the character of a place, he can add the touch of an artist, and

some of his vistas look more like oil painting than photos. A series of his magnificent Venice photos have been published in a limited edition book, ful- filling a long term ambition. Vic started his career in photography when his Dad got him an opening in Fleet Street. Rather than take the route into print as his Dad had hoped, Vic end- ed up in the Dark Room where amongst other things he developed photos of major historical events; the Blitz, the horrors of Belsen and Ausch- witz as the truth unfolded at the end of the war, the Kings funeral and happier times such as the Coro- nation of our Queen. He moved to the other side of the lens, combining his love of fine art printing with high quality graphic arts, doing many com- mercial roles that took himall over the world, and eventually ran his own studio in Brentford.

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L to R Dennis Wilson, Vic Kettle, Al Jardine

His attention to detail and his search for perfection made his work very sought after, both by clients and collectors. Of Vic’s innate modesty, which is still so characteristic of him Penrose’s International Review of Graphic Artists (1981) says “Too often British art and craftsmanship are underplayed, which makes its emergence and acclaim all the more worthwhile” But Vic’s skills and success are not confined to one profession; he also had his own band in the 1950’s – The Vic Kettle Modern Jazz Unit, gigging all over Europe, including Ronnie Scott’s in London, and also touring with the likes of The Beach Boys. For the jazz aficionados amongst you, a 45rpmof the VKMJU from 1965 went for $61 earlier this year! (see below)

Note that I have not mentioned Vic’s age. Age is irrelevant. The fact that Vic, so much the leading light in traditional methods, now has an Ipad 3 to showcase his work, and the Garageband app on it to mix music, says it all! His curiosity, enthusiasm and youthfulness seem eternal.

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