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A life in pictures: Gallery celebrates decades of snaps by P&J photographer Jim Love following death aged 90

Former Press and Journal photographer Jim Love has died, aged 90
Former Press and Journal photographer Jim Love has died, aged 90

Jim Love said he had “the best job in the world” as he spent decades documenting life in the north-east from behind his camera lens.

Mr Love, who has died aged 90, photographed everything from portraits of the Duke of Rothesay to snaps of faithful dogs waiting to meet their masters outside the Victoria Lounge in Torry while working for the P&J.

Mr Love first picked up a Leica camera at the age of 16 and joined Aberdeen Journals in 1959 as a photographer, where he worked until retirement in 1992.

Over the course of his 33-year long career, the former Hilton School pupil secured a number of accolades, including second prize at the Scottish Press Awards for Sports photographer of the Year.

He also took part in a number of memorable photo shoots, including one adventure in a plane above Loch Ness to try and snap the elusive local monster.

Photographer Jim Love’s press card

He was dispatched on one occasion to photograph the Duke of Rothesay in Royal Deeside for his birthday, and was a well-known face as a football snapper at Pittodrie.

Outside of work he had a great many interests, including golf, dinghy-sailing, motorbiking, hillwalking, archaeology and astronomy.

Mr Love’s son Duncan said he had an “adventurous spirit”, and loved spending time with his wife, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

He added: “He didn’t really have much of an education of his own back in the day, and left school at a young age, and always wanted to ensure that we had a decent education when he was bringing up his kids.

“Everything he did was do-it-yourself.

“He got me into scuba diving when I was 14 by making me a wetsuit, laboriously cutting and gluing together neoprene, and would melt down lead in pans on the stove to make lead weights for the weight belts.

“He’d disappear for hours in the attic making gliders and model planes from balsa wood, he was just interested in everything to do with flight and sailing.

“When he was 80 he bought himself a sea kayak, from a guy who said he was getting rid of it because it was too dangerous, but he always had that adventurous spirit, right to the end.

“He really was larger than life.”

Mr Love jun added: “He had a special relationship with all his grandkids, he spent a lot of time with them and it it kept him young.

“Great-grandkids then came along, and they’ve been a great source of pride for him too.”

Fellow former P&J photographer Colin Rennie, who retired after 46 years at Aberdeen Journals last year, started his career in photography after going for Mr Love’s position when he retired.

Mr Rennie said he was inspired by Mr Love while working as a darkroom technician.

He said: “He was a huge guy, six-foot four, and always so enthusiastic about his job.

“He would hand me the rolls of film, and I would go and print it, and he’d tell me about his rare days up in the hills and the country, and just loving it.

“I asked him how he could be so enthusiastic about the same job day in and day out, he said it was the best job in the world, and when I heard that, I wanted to be a photographer.

“I applied for his job and got it after he retired, so I really looked up to Jim – and I mean really looked up, because he was so tall – he was just a lovely guy, a gentle giant, and a great photographer.”

He was wife to Kathleen, father to Gael, Duncan, Helen and Kelly, grandfather to 12, and great-grandfather to three.

He died on April 17 after complications from an acute stroke in February.

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