Yesterday, at Bloomsbury Auctions, rare photographs of the Beatles crossing Abbey Road shot by photographer Iain Macmillan have sold for £180,000. Paul McCartney chose the image that was used for the cover of the last album they recorded together.
“Iain Macmillan was hired by the Beatles in 1969 to shoot the album art for Abbey Road but he only had 10 minutes to do it in. He was stood on a ladder leaning against a tree and for 10 minutes he got John, Paul, George and Ringo to walk back and forth across the zebra crossing on Abbey Road. He took shots of them going both ways across the crossing until he finally got the frame he was after. In the photo we all know the Beatles are all very symmetrical and there is no traffic in the background but in the outtakes there are taxis and buses on the road. It is amazing to see the making of what is one of the most iconic pop photographs ever taken. More than 50 years on people are still going to Abbey Road to recreate Iain Macmillan’s photo. The outtakes are incredibly rare individually but this is the first time they have ever been sold as a set.”