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The influence of your parents (12 replies and 6 comments)

B
5 months ago
B 5 months ago

Apologies if this question is too personal, but wondering if you could say something about the influence of your parents on your life/work.

I believe you've said your father was a builder and mother an actress (although I understand she passed away when you were young)? What kind of builder was your father? Did he have an interest in the arts/literature?

Roger Deakins
5 months ago
Roger Deakins 5 months ago

My father had an ironmongers shop and did some residential building work. No, he had little interest in film or 'the arts' in general. I'm sure he hoped I would take over the family business up until his retirement. He visited my wife and I in LA one time before he passed away and I think it was only then that he really understood what I was doing with my life. My mother was a model before the war when she joined the WRACs. But, of course, that was way before my time!

Mike
5 months ago

Roger,
As a matter of interest, where was your dads shop, Market St TQ ?

B
5 months ago
B 5 months ago

Is that shop still in operation?

Was there ever a time where you considered taking over the family business? 

Roger Deakins
5 months ago
Roger Deakins 5 months ago

No, my father retired sold the shop. I think it became a clothing store after that. I never considered taking on the business.

Mike
5 months ago

Roger,
While we’ve got you on the subject, was your Dad’s shop in Market st Torquay?
Like Blacksmiths, Ironmongers were the backbone of towns and villages and commanded much influence, the proprietor would have had many contacts including the building trade and the mayor’s office. Was a good business to go in years ago.

MikeCurley
5 months ago
MikeCurley 5 months ago

My father has always been supportive in everything I settled down to, in all my beginnings. I do not remember that he ever tried to enforce his views. He respects my choices. I guess this only happened when I was in school and he always reminded me that  need to do my homework in 6 hours», was scared that I will not catch up with studies.

Roger Deakins
5 months ago
Roger Deakins 5 months ago

I should say that it was actually my dad who first introduced me to film when I was probably 4 or 5 years old. He had 'obtained' a small projector and he set this up in the attic among his other wartime effects, a German Luger pistol and a bomber jacket being others I remember. At that time, in the 1950's and before TV, you could rent a reel of a cartoon film from the local post office. I think my favorite was called 'Felix goes to the Moon' and I must have seen that short cartoon over 20 times. Choices were very few but that experience and those images have stayed with me. Magic!

Mike
5 months ago

Roger,
This is getting interesting. Did your father join the RAF? Luger pistol?? Perhaps he was a POW having bailed out. Would like to hear more please.

B
5 months ago
B 5 months ago

I tried finding that Felix cartoon, I’d like to see it.

Do you feel the ‘artistic’ side of your personality, the side interested in books, films and ideas, came from your mother?

Roger Deakins
5 months ago
Roger Deakins 5 months ago

I never had chance to know my mother. My genes maybe!

Roger Deakins
5 months ago
Roger Deakins 5 months ago

My father was with the Royal Engineers in France before (and for a while after) Dunkirk then he was with the Long Range Desert Group. He was an explosives expert who help immobilize railways and airfields behind German lines in N Africa. As a member of the SAS he went into Sicily to disable the enemy guns before the allied invasion. A pretty eventful war!

Mike
4 months ago

Ah! Now we have it. “He who dares wins” The resilience and stubborness has come up through the genes. Bingo!

B
4 months ago
B 4 months ago

Could I ask what you were like as a student? Were you generally a good student? Did school come easy for you?

Roger Deakins
4 months ago
Roger Deakins 4 months ago

'Who dares wins'. I never thought about that.

I was rejected by one Art College as being too academically qualified. It seems I had too many O and A levels to be 'creative'! School came pretty easy apart from languages. I can barely speak English.

Mike
4 months ago

Nobody in Kingswear speaks anyway. Lucky to get a good morning.

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