Whatever Happened To Charlie Kemp

Maril Kemp, Laraine Ashton, London
Maril Kemp’s Z-card

I was trawling through a pile of old Z-cards when I came upon Maril Kemp’s – Whatever happened to Maril’s husband, the fashion photographer Charles Kemp? The last time I saw Charlie was in 1989-1990, he was walking down Grafton Way towards Tottenham Court Road, we stopped and talked for about five minutes (I think he’d been to University College Hospital?); I was in a hurry because my car needed moving, “You’re looking old” I said. “Fuck off” he said. “I’ll ring you later” I said, but sadly I didn’t.

I’ve got a bad feeling about Charlie Kemp!

© Model: Maril Kemp, Photographer: Charles Kemp Friday 24th July 1981, Hair: Ian Robson. London
Maril Kemp July 1981

At the end of a test session with Debbie Benson, Maril, Charlie and I did a session at his studio on Friday 24th July 1981 (so my diary tells me. A strange coincidence: Greta Almroth the Swedish actress died on 24:07:1981 (aged 93) in Stockholm, Sweden). I’ve a feeling I did the make-up as well, but it doesn’t look like my style so maybe I didn’t. The idea was to give Maril a more edgy look!

BTW here’s a styling tip, wearing your hair pulled back helps to highlight the cheekbones and elongate the face, which can either make your face look thinner and/or more balanced.

Anyway, it was around this time that Maril became a dangerous distraction for drivers as she lay semi-naked on a billboard on the A4, West Cromwell Road, Earls Court (I think she was advertising Bergasol tanning lotion) – Charlie and I drove past it, flat out at about 35 mph, in his Renault 4! Happy days – are you out there Charlie? :) xxx

Charlie Kemp
One of my favourite photos

[edit: 3rd June 13] Maril has informed me that Charlie died last year. Absolutely heartbreaking news. Rest in peace you old B x