A Barefoot Moment on Abbey Road

The Beatles and photographer Ian Macmillan had about ten minutes to shoot the cover of Abbey Road on August 8, 1969.

As the story goes, Macmillan stood on a ladder as the four musicians walked back and forth along the crosswalk. A police officer blocked traffic. Because the street surface was hot in early August, Paul alternated between wearing sandals and walking barefoot.

They managed to get the perfect shot: mid-stride, full of style, and incredibly relaxed.

My group of four—my father, uncle, aunt, and me—had about 30 seconds to recreate the cover of Abbey Road on October 11, 2016.

No stepladder. We handed our camera to a lovely guy in his mid-twenties, who stood on the studio side of the street; we followed up by photographing him doing the same thing with his girlfriend.

No police officer. It’s a busy intersection, and occasionally taxi drivers would honk at pedestrians. (How a driver could not anticipate Abbey Road traffic escapes me.)

Because Paul went barefoot, I went barefoot. The street surface is chilly in October.

Somehow, we managed to get as close to the perfect shot as we could: all four of us in the frame, full of excitement, and incredibly optimistic that we weren’t about to be run over.

End result? Brilliant.

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